Two 911 call takers suspended for not sending police sooner when Quintonio LeGrier called

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Quintonio LeGrier with his foster mom, Mary Strenger, at his graduation from Brooks Academy. | Strenger family photo

Two call takers at the city’s Office of Emergency Management and Communications were suspended for not dispatching police sooner after Quintonio LeGrier called them for help.

LeGrier, 19, and Bettie Jones, 55, were fatally shot by Officer Robert Rialmo, 27, about 4:30 a.m. Dec. 26 in the 4700 block of West Erie. Rialmo and other officers were responding to a domestic disturbance call involving LeGrier and his father.

LeGrier, a former engineering student who was struggling with mental health issues, was armed with a bat when he was shot. City officials said the shooting of Jones, a mother of five, was an accident.

LeGrier called police three times. In the first two calls, placed at 4:18 a.m. and 4:20 a.m., OEMC call takers failed “to follow protocol,” OEMC spokeswoman Melissa Stratton said in an emailed statement Tuesday night.

The first call taker received a three-day suspension, and the second received a one-day suspension, Stratton said.

“OEMC discovered these two calls — and the issues surrounding them, during our own internal review and immediately started an investigation — and turned them over to the Independent Police Review Authority,” Stratton said.

In early February, Rialmo filed a lawsuit against LeGrier’s estate, citing emotional damage. The suit seeks more than $50,000 for physical and emotional trauma and $10 million in punitive damages.

Two wrongful-death lawsuits have been filed against the city by the LeGrier and Jones families.

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