Cleveland 911 dispatcher under fire for handling of Amanda Berry call

Twitchy has already introduced you to Cleveland’s newest hero, Charles Ramsey, also known as “Dead Giveaway Guy,” who reportedly rescued three women from captivity. Police have released the desperate 911 call made by Amanda Berry, who had been missing for 10 years, and the dispatcher who took Berry’s call isn’t getting the rave reviews that Ramsey is enjoying.

Editor’s note: This post has been amended to reflect that the people rescued in Cleveland are now adult women.

  • sec818

    Did the dispatcher have somewhere more important to be?? Wow – sounds like she couldn’t be bothered to help this poor girl!

    • Elaine

      She sounded so ignorant. I felt bad for that poor girl begging her to send help!

    • Jason Call

      Chuck D. and Public Enemy already ‘splained this 911 binness some 25 years ago. This discussion is a waste of time.

  • TJ

    One has to give some slack to the dispatcher. Saying they where a someone missing for ten years is like saying you are getting messages from space in your fillings.This type of call could easily fall to where someone did not take their meds and called 911 to deliver some smokes and a sandwich.

    • Natalya♡Lviv

      They should take every call seriously. That is their job.

      • TJ

        How much more could she have done. The dispatcher may have treated it off but right by the book and not much more.

        • TJ

          If anything was not done by the book they will look at that but to call for a firing less then a few hours after is way to early to even know. Which know one will know as they will not tell if anything happens to her.

        • Tibbe Bear

          She could have ordered all available units immediately and not had to be talked into sending something other than the next car and she could have stayed on the line and talked soothingly to that poor scared girl, desperately wanting to keep a connection to police and rescue. She needed that connection to authority and that woman just dumped the call after the minimum. She’s not cut out for that work.

          • Dayna

            I agree.

          • Missy2Cats

            I agree.

          • Moby999

            You don’t know that HE was talked into anything. And he is
            not a dispatcher. Dispatchers and call takers are not the same people. The person handling the call puts the info into the system while they are talking and someone else receives it and dispatches it to the first available unit. Even
            while the dispatcher is still talking, help is already being sent. If you listen to the timing of the conversation, clearly there had not been enough time for the dispatchers to give him a status to relay to her. Should he have lied and said they are coming when he did not know for sure? Or should he tell the truth as he did, that someone will be over as soon as they can.

            That being said, sometimes there are no available units (this isn’t Dragnet) and calls have to be prioritized based on whether someone is in immediate danger. She had gotten away. She was no longer in danger. Should her call be taken before someone who is being held at gunpoint or has in intruder in their home? Had she thought to tell the dispatcher that others were still being held, her call would have gotten priority as there would still be folks in danger. By the way, from what I’ve heard, they got there immediately so what is your beef other than to sit in smug, hateful judgment of someone who works a hell of a lot harder than you feeble brain can comprehend?

          • Tom Burnett

            You seem to be tired of yourself. Call takers are responsible for remaining on the line and calming panicked callers until they actually SPEAK to a responding officer. There is a button their console they can push to prioritize the call. This call taker failed.

          • Moby999

            THAT was not a dispatcher. The dispatcher IS NOT THE SAME PERSON! The dispatcher is talking to the responders while the operator is talking to the callers. I worked for a law enforcement agency and we had a call center. Have you ever
            seen one in action? How sad that you are not even intelligent enough to process the first line of my post.

          • Anita Long Vacation

            The fact that units were on scene within 2 minutes tells us that the dispatcher did exactly that. Focus your anger at the kidnappers!

        • Iexpectmore

          That operators attitude, especially cursing at her when hanging up, could have sent her back into a victimized state.

          • Betty Lamb

            Did we listen to the same 911 cqll? I didn’t hear any cursing from the dispatcher…

          • Brian Heath

            Go to YouTube. You can clearly hear the GUY, not girl, call Amanda a f-ing b as he hangs up. The media has not aired that part.

          • Missy2Cats

            I agree. That’s the level of training these folks get these days,and it should be remedied.

          • Moby999

            Nobody cursed. Listen to the recording! In fact, as soon as they got off the phone with her, they called a detective and asked that the kidnapping records be pulled.

            By the way, I probably would have cursed out of shock that someone was still alive after 10 years. You know,. holy ^%%$!

        • GoodStash

          Right by the book?! They’re supposed to stay on the line until authorities arrive…What book are you reading??

          • TJ

            Might be in some cities but in a big city like Cleveland. They can not have have a enough dispatchers to wait until police arrive at every call. Get the information and move on to the next call as fast as possible. During a shift they might not even a minute in between calls.

          • Wonder Pony

            Cleveland? A big city? Dude, you gotta get out a little more often. Don’t stay in Pennsyltucky your whole life.

          • TJ

            How big does one have to be to be a “big city”. Over a million or just the second largest city in Ohio.

          • robcrawford2

            “Cleveland? A big city?”

            Provincial, much?

          • Worship Dancer

            you are a moron who obviously knows absolutely NOTHING about 9-1-1 dispatchers. my sister has been a dispatcher IN SEATTLE WA for over 20 YEARS & STAYS ON THE LINE UNTIL POLICE ARRIVE. HERE’S A CLUE – IF THE CALL IS DISCONNECTED SHE & ALL OF THE DISPATCHERS ARE REQUIRED TO CALL BACK UNTIL THEY GET SOMEONE ON THE LINE.

          • TJ

            Did you hear Charles Ramsey 911 call. They did not want to say on the line either. Just how many calls did they get to send cars to this location. Are all calls to 911 to stay on the line even if several people all call to the same location.

          • TJ

            How many people called to send the police to this location. Every cell phone on the block could have been used. Are they to stay on the line with every one. Or as the call was already in the system every call after is treated as Amanda’s

          • Anita Long Vacation

            That’s not true with every call. You probably shouldn’t be calling other people morons when it’s clear you have no firsthand knowledge about 9-1-1 and dispatching. Having a sister who dispatches doesn’t make you a subject matter expert, honey.

          • Donna DeMartino

            That is such a lame bs excuse! When this dispatcher heard the name Amanda Berry he/she??? should have sent every squad car AND medical available PRONTO! What a disrespectful idiot this so called “dispatcher” sounds like. Probably got his/her game of FARMVILLE interrupted!

          • Betty Lamb

            NO they do not HAVE to stay on the line. It is advised but it all depends on the situation at hand. Amanda hung up on the dispatcher, said BYE.

          • Q Flynn

            Um, yeah, after the dispatcher said, “I TOLD you the police are on their way. Talk to them when they get there.” Amanda was in a panic. This jerk should find a new line of work where compassion and empathy are of no use.

          • Anita Long Vacation

            Which policy are you quoting, Goodstash?

        • Holly

          I am a police dispatcher, and never, NEVER would I be talking to someone who is crying, and claiming to have been kidnapped and tell them I would send a car as soon as one comes available. Nor would I let her get off the phone. The girl is clearly distraught. That dispatcher should have kept her lazy ass on the phone until units arrived. She did not do her job. What if her kidnapper found her after they hung up? How would the dispatcher know what happened? What if someone was knocking on the door, and they answered the door assuming it was the police, and it is the kidnapper? The dispatcher should have stayed on the phone with her, and advised her when the police were at the door. So, Trevor, until you have been trained as a dispatcher, don’t say that she did her job by the book. She is a crappy dispatcher and should lose her job before someone is killed on her watch.

      • Paul Rain

        Of course they should. Do you think that they don’t have other calls, which may well involve other people whose lives may be in as much if not more imminent danger?

      • johnnycab23513

        Someone missing for ten years calls rates a car NOW, and a call to notify the Chief.

        • truckee22

          Maybe there weren’t any units available at the moment. I think most people would be shocked to hear how few officers are on duty at any given moment. It’s way lower than you think. Plus, a single arrest ties up officers for an hour or more. Some arrests, some prisoner transfers, maybe a ‘sick’ prisoner or two wanting to go to the hospital (jail-itis) and there goes half or more of your available units.
          What the public thinks is happening at any given moment and what’s reality are two different things. When we say we are understaffed, we mean it.

          • pococolo

            That’s why citizens need the right to be armed if they choose. It may take many minutes for cops to arrive- even 15 or 20, maybe more. Citizens often must confront the danger without them for a substantial period of time.

          • Albert Gump Kaye

            Paranoid nonsense that is irrelevant to this story. I’m waiting for one of you nuts to blame Obama for this.

          • Donna DeMartino

            A FREAKIN MEN to that pococolo ~ FINALLY an Intelligent, Logical, Rational Response and I couldn’t agree more!

          • Sara Mohammed

            Well where the hell were they all, out giving tickets??

          • truckee22

            Do you think the call that the girl made was the only thing going on in the city? What do you think the Police do all day? Sit around and wait for something to happen. They are out there juggling multiple incidents, trying to prioritize calls and responding to what seems most important. Simply put there are more calls to respond to then there are officers.

        • ZoriahShepard

          While that’s admirable, it’s not realistic. It’s been 10yrs. I think it’s safe to say that maybe Amanda Berry wasn’t first and foremost on this dispatcher’s mind. The dispatcher didn’t brush her off (thank god). We don’t know that the dispatcher didn’t send a call out at the highest priority (lights and sirens).
          The dispatcher’s job isn’t entirely 100% defensible, but he/she doesn’t deserve to be vilified.

          • Anita Long Vacation

            And what people don’t consider is that it has been ten years. He may be a monster, but he didn’t kill her for a decade. It was over for her the moment she escaped to the neighbors house. He wasn’t coming for her in front of an audience.

          • Moby999

            According to the guy who rescued her, it was quite a scene with multiple units there within minutes.

        • Anita Long Vacation

          What leads you to believe a unit wasn’t dispatched right away? They were on scene within two minutes.

      • torpedoman2002

        You don’t understand how many crank calls, exaggerated calls, and off the wall calls they receive in a day. They cannot refuse a call and this lady didn’t, but the dispatcher has no clue what is going on. Also the dispatcher has to remain calm. They cannot get caught up in the situation. The dispatchers on 9/11 had to take calls from very excited and scared people and they have to maintain their composure knowing we were being attacked by terrorists. This may be the way for this dispatcher to remain calm. Put yourself in the dispatchers shoes.

        • Albert Gump Kaye

          Nonsense. When a girl calls saying she is a kidnap victim and needs help at once what on earth could be more important?
          If crank calls are an excuse than the police are useless in an emergency. This woman was a horrid excuse for a human being.

          • torpedoman2002

            Why do you choose to condemn this dispatcher? A dispatcher just doing a job. This was probably the 20th call that day, and there are 20 or more calls waiting before the work day ends. This dispatcher is doing a job that he/she was trained to do. The call was received, information was collected while waiting for an officer to become available, then sent the officer to the residence the victim was calling from. This dispatcher is just someone doing a job, and not getting paid a lot doing it. Quit blaming the dispatcher and blame the monster who took these women and held them for so long.

          • Anita Long Vacation

            Says the person who doesn’t have clue one about 9-1-1 call volume or dispatching. Oh, and it was a male dispatcher. Did you even listen to it?

        • SAVE THE U.S.

          You are an idiot.
          The dispatcher had a bad attitude from the very beginning.
          Anyone could tell from Amanda’s voice that she was serious and almost hysterical.

          The dispatcher is a bad-attitude black diva … millions of them in Cleveland and we certainly don’t need one as a dispatcher.

          Let her get on the Obamasite welfare gravy train like most of her sub-human, criminal-breeding sisters.

    • Brett McMicken

      i hate reading those type of stories in which someone calls 911 because a drive-thru order was messed up. 911 was created for a reason and that reason is to help people in a situation such as this.

    • Mark Rebel_1

      Rightly so. You won’t believe it in a sec. Please give her a break.

    • Paul Rain

      Especially if you’ve only heard the ‘highlights’ version of the whole 5 minute call. Starting to look like another “This guy looks like he’s up to no good. He looks black.” moment..

      • TomJB

        It’s starting to look like another doctored call? Really?

        • Julie the Jarhead

          Not doctored so much as — the portion of the call that was released to media (in this age of limited attention span) was very brief and carefully chosen for the maximum effect.

          • Texyank

            Yup and won’t be surprised if it’s blamed on the sequester.

    • tvaddict1

      Please stop making excuses for the poor job performance. She clearly shouldn’t be in this job. She has neither the proper skills, temperament, or attitude. In the “real” world she would be fired today. This should be what is done to her.

      How much more could she have done? Plenty. She is supposed to be the person we rely on for help. So tired of the excuses. We deserve better than this, so fire her with cause and replace her with a human who has the proper skills for the job.

      • ZoriahShepard

        That’s not fair. The majority of dispatchers do not answer the phone with a smile on their face. Around 90% of calls into 911 are non emergency. Again – it’s admirable to want to treat each and every call like it’s an emergency, but it just doesn’t happen. Day in and day out for 8-12 hours a day, dealing with every single mundane problem you can think of takes its toll; and then throw in the occasional (yes, occasional) shooting or robbery or felony assault and it’s not easy. It’s definitely not a job for everyone. But to ask for the job of someone based on one call that is so rare is just unfair.

        • torpedoman2002

          Correct Shepard. I have been on ambulances going on a call in code 3. We are ready to meet a very ill patient like a heart attack. We get there and the patient just needs a ride to a doctors appointment and he/she doesn’t have a ride. I think there needs to be more education what a dispatcher has to deal with especially in big cities with limited resources.

      • Betty Lamb

        She is a he and HE did everything according to the books. He assured her the police were on their way, got the most important info; address and perp. He did not cut her off, Amanda hung up saying bye. Wish people would get all the facts before they become serious critics.

    • Tina Sergent Seward

      I agree with Trevor. Had I been the 911 dispatcher, I probably would have thought, “Yeah, right. Amanda Berry. The girl’s been long dead.” But I would have done my duty and made sure police got out there immediately.

      • torpedoman2002

        She said the police is on the way when she let the call go. If there is not available police what is she suppose to do? She can’t pull someone off another call. She can’t call in more police off duty she is not high enough on the food chain. She stayed with the poor woman until she could get a car on the way. Here is what a lot of people are failing to see. This dispatcher is in Cleveland not Maybarry RFD. When she left this call she more than likely immediately received another call.

    • truckee22

      I think most people don’t understand what is going on at any given time in any given city. There is far more happening than people realize and someone claiming to be a missing person from 10 years ago ( who most people wouldn’t remember from that long ago) may not be the highest priority call on the board at that moment. Plus the fact that the dispatchers are dealing with a huge volume of incoming calls while trying to sort through them and prioritize the severity makes what they do very difficult.
      In hindsight they should treated it as a higher priority but cut them some slack. The problem got handled and everyone is ok. Calling for the dispatcher to get fired is a bit harsh.

    • Amanda

      bull shit excuse. It is not the 911 operator’s job to determine whether or not a call is legit or not. THAT is ONLY up to the police.

      • Anita Long Vacation

        The 911 operator had units on scene within two minutes. Get over your clueless self.

    • pococolo

      But she wasn’t getting messages from space and she wasn’t on meds. She’d been kidnapped and held against her will for 10 years! The dispatcher didn’t even ask if anyone else was at either, or both, locations and if the victim was safe or determine her exact location and who she was with. Dispatcher didn’t ask where the kidnapper was, or if he was armed. That woman needed support and reassurance not the big kiss off she got from the dispatcher who was telling the woman to go out and talk to police across the street from where a man wanting to do her harm might return at any time. The least dispatcher could have done was to stay on the line until police arrived.

  • DChancellor

    Why didn’t he stay on the line with her until the police had her?

    • truckee22

      Because he probably had 20 other calls holding and needed to get to them, so they won’t get criticized for taking to long to answer calls to 911. Most dispatcher centers are understaffed and over worked. Who wants a low paying job with odd hours and constant abuse from callers and the public scrutinizing your every action?

  • ZoriahShepard

    As a dispatcher I can say she/he almost dropped the ball. She/he recovered sorta and tried to do a better job. But that’s a call you want to stay on the line until an officer arrives. I don’t know that he/she violated policy but his/her lack of patience and empathy may not be enough for a suspension or admin leave or a firing.

    • John Thomas “Jack” Ward III

      A Unionized Dispatcher, I’ll bet…..A slap on the wrist? He/She deserves to be FIRED! Jawamax 8<{D}

      • ZoriahShepard

        It doubt it’ll happen. And yes more than likely unionized. Unless she/he put someone in immediate danger and failed to follow established policy – there won’t be a firing w/out due cause.

  • Lorraine

    I am appalled at hoe this call fr Amanda Berry was handled by the dispatcher…Immediate firing is called for….Additional training may teach her better skills but not the compassion that is needed. She kept insisting that this terrified young woman “talk to the police when they get there”. What about “Stay on the line with me Amanda”. You;re going to be ok now. The police are on the way”, NOT we’ll send a car when one opens up!!!!!” Disgusting!!!!!!!!!!

  • CR

    Well, at least the dispatcher sent help instead of going to sleep or heading off to Vegas.

    • AMERICAN Kafir™(KAdams)


    • Amanda

      LMAO!!!!!! Good call!!!!!

  • Jimni27

    A similar situation happened in a neighborhood where I lived at one time. A woman was kidnapped in front of her house, husband shot, and she was missing for 5 days until she got loose enough to call 911. The 911 dispatcher thought it was a hoax because they had received prior calls like that, and that was only after 5 days. I can only imagine how many Cleveland got in the last ten years. It wasn’t until the police got on the phone and they busted the door down that the 911 dispatcher finally believed it and said ” Is it really her?” This 911 call reminded me ( ETA) exactly of that one except that they should have stayed on the line

  • Chip

    It IS Cleveland. Ain’t no telling what type of stuff those dispatchers have heard on that line…

  • Christine Simmons, MD

    I am delighted that Ms. Berry, Ms. DeJesus, and Ms. Knight have been found alive this evening. However, after hearing that the neighbor called 911 and was rebuffed, and after hearing the appalling treatment Ms. Berry received from the soulless, compassionless 911 operator as she was trying to connect with police, obviously hysterical,I would like an investigation of the Cleveland PD and its 911 staff. No parent throughout the nation listening to that tape could remain unaffected by the young woman’s desperation nor not be enraged by the cruelty of a 911 operator who kept telling this frantic caller to “wait for the police” in a bored tone of voice when the caller was terrified that her kidnapper would return. It is obvious on the face of it that the 911 operator should have stayed on the phone with Amanda until the police arrived. I am hoping that someone will have the guts to take on the Cleveland PD, starting at the top. What are their 911 policies and procedures, training, and hiring practices? I believe there will be an investigation of the Cleveland PD based on their failure to find the young women before now. As a physician, mother, and human being, I strongly believe that any investigation should extend to their 911 department. Thank you.

  • Tibbe Bear

    Must have been break-time and rude 911 dispatcher couldn’t even manage to stay on the line with poor, desperate Amanda Berry, who was pleading for a connection to police and help. For all she knew, that animal could walk in that neighbor’s house at any time and yet the dispatcher was going to send the next car available? NO! Send all available units NOW!

  • fishydude

    On-Star would have stayed on the phone with her :)

  • Chase C.

    Holy shit give the guy a break. Did the police get there? YES. Were the 3 women rescued? YES. 911 dispatcher isn’t a high paying job. From the shortened version of the call I thought the guy handled it well giving the circumstances.

    • Bran Chesterton

      So because people aren’t paid well, they shouldn’t have to do their job well? I’m a teacher but I do my job 100%, even if sometimes it feels like I’m paid for only about 60%. This dispatcher was impatient and lacked any hint of empathy – it’s not about remaining calm, it was about listening to a scared and frantic human being on the phone who still very much feels in danger. You don’t shove that call off, even if it is lunchtime or you don’t get paid as much as you think you should.

    • robcrawford2

      “911 dispatcher isn’t a high paying job.”

      So what? I worked fast food and tried to treat every customer with courtesy.

      • Chase C.

        That’s not the point. The point is you have generally younger people working in a high pressure job. So please all you guys attacking this person tell me how his handling the situation slowed down the police response to this poor woman.

        She wasn’t calling technical support, she called 911. His job is to get the police dispatched and get the details of the emergency which he did.

  • Jules

    There was something very definitely ‘off’ about this 911 operator. “Talk to the police when they get there….”?? I had to call 911 once. Someone tried to break in my home. It took 45 minutes for the police to arrive. But, the 911 Operator wouldn’t let me off the phone. Kept talking to me the whole time…reassuring me. 45 minutes was a long time to wait; it felt like forever. But, without the Operator on the other end of the phone, I don’t know what I would have done. I sure wish this young girl had received the same sort of comfort that I did.

  • Tony Stewart

    sounds like the 911 dispatcher wanted off the most other 911 calls the dispatcher says…stay on the line untill police get there…wow..this girl just said she is worried her kidnapper was coming back n the 911 lady wants off the phone…wow!!!

  • Michael

    sounded like a career dispatcher at shift change.

  • $1014973

    Well folks, as bad as this call was, it is Cleveland. She’s lucky someone picked up the phone at all.

  • Jeff

    This woman definitely needs to lose her job. My mouth dropped open when I heard the dispatcher tell the victim that a car would be send when one became available. What????? This woman is telling her she has been kidnapped. Just because she got free does not mean it isn’t an emergency. How pathetic it is that the victim is the one who has to tell the dispatcher that she needs the police before the kidnapper returns and kills her and the person who is helping her.

    Fire this woman now.

    • Anita Long Vacation

      You simply cannot send a unit if there are none free to send. You people just don’t get it. It’s not like the dispatcher has cars lined up like taxicabs waiting for a fare. He had absolutely no control over who was or was not available to send. Should he have yanked officers off the domestic violence call to go? Or perhaps the parents waiting to report their teen missing…should they wait because Amanda Berry called?

      They were on scene within two minutes of being dispatched. The guy did his job. Why don’t you redirect your anger where it belongs, with the kidnappers?

  • Christina

    I’m so glad I found this link. That dispatcher made me so mad. In the first place dispatchers are supposed to be your life lines and keep you on the phone line until the appropriate help arrives. Amanda Berry tells him who she is and that she’s been kidnapped and missing for the last 10yrs and he could care less. Then he says he will send a car when one comes available! That dispatcher should have sent the US MILITARY! (I know a bit much) but he should have got his supervisor and sent everyone he could think of over there because that constituted the FBI. I hope they fire him. He does not deserve to have that job. He was very unprofessional, discompassionate, uncaring, ridiculous and RUDE in my book. FIRE HIM NOW! He will go down as the dumbest guy on earth!

  • John Thomas “Jack” Ward III

    I would be considered a little bit under-qualified to be a 911 dispatcher, but I would have stayed on the line and sent a few vehicles immediately, and any others if needed by the primary unit(s).
    But as a former Taxicab Dispatcher (and Driver), the priority isn’t as urgent, but you’d hear it all… Jawamax 8<{D}

  • RightThinking1

    “And who has started the countdown clock on that Cleveland 911 dispatcher putting put on administrative leave?”

    Won’t happen. Consider this, from the 911 call made re the Atlanta bombing during the ’96 Olympics:

    “A transcript of the July 27 call in which a man warned that a bomb would
    explode in the park shows that it took an operator 10 minutes to notify
    a dispatcher of the threat. During that time, the operator tried to
    enter the call into the computer system. Then, when the system would not
    accept the information without an address, the operator called a law
    enforcement command center. The person who answered responded: “I ain’t
    got no address to Centennial Park, what y’all think I am?”

    What happened to the operator/dispatcher/law enforcement? Well…, nothing, or rather “Additional training”. On the upside, I think that then-mayor Bill Campbell (D) may still be in prison for corruption.

  • reaganFF

    Please understand: THIS IS CLEVELAND. You’re lucky if they respond to a non-emergency call in TWO DAYS.

    I lived five min away from where these girls were found, in a gentrified area of Cleveland named Tremont. After a year of having friends’ cars broken into regularly, and council people who were arrested for DUI more times than I can count, and a mayor that continues to run the city into the ground, I moved to the ‘burbs where the last non-emergency call I made to local police was responded to within FOUR MINUTES.

  • irishgirl91

    She is a 911 dispatcher in Cleavland. I guarantee you she has crackheads calling about the lack of chicken nuggets at McD’s. She obviously has become jaded and callous to the people she is supposed to serve, but if she has previous problems she needs to go. I grew up in a tough neighborhood and can tell you that there are good people there that deserve a 911 operator that will help.

  • Cajun

    You can bet your ass if that ‘dispatcher’ would have seen an address on that screen near hers, or her little ‘peeps’, she would have jumped into gear alot sooner. Yeah, I said it.

  • vanbratch

    Why do they keep referring to the women as “girls”? They were girls when they went missing, now they’re women, 26 and 24. Someone enlighten me, please.

    • Guest

      Because they sort of “stop” the age at the time they were kidnapped. I would be these “women” are more like teenagers emotionally at least.

  • 912er

    Maybe the phone was ringing or whatever but when someone says they have been kidnapped for 10 years and gives their name,you have to take that seriously…..The kidnapper might be trying to recapture her.The dispatcher should have keep the conversation going and reassured her he would stay on the line with her until the police showed up.

  • Dane Gunderson

    911 dispatcher to be promoted to administrator of care allocations for Obamacare

  • Pops

    Was that woman a welfare to work dispatcher, doesn’t want to work but has to or is it the training she received or there lack of it I should say. Either way its very disturbing. I believe the dispatcher would’ve hung up if not for miss berry did not keep her on the phone. No excuses she needs reprimanding and retraining. The city of Cleveland should be embarrassed.

  • Baba Ghanoush

    Sounds like the dispatcher had to attend to their hot pocket in the microwave.

    Dispatcher: Ok, police are on their way
    Berry: OK…Hello….Ok
    Dispatcher: I said the police are on their way. Now I have to go, my hot pocket is getting cold and I only have a 30 minute lunch.

  • DavidKramer

    Do not worry folks, being incompetent will not get a union member fired in the age of Obama.

    • arrow2010

      Not only will the dispatcher not get fired, but will get a promotion.

      • gideonpm222

        Public can petition to get the 911 operator fired. He can be removed by public demand. So get on line and start sending the mayor emails asking for him to be fired.

  • disqus_FZzgpFDO4i

    I am a police communications officer. I would never have hung up the phone. I would have kept her on the line until units arrived. They arrived two minutes later. If the man had returned to that area and the woman had a visual of him, she could have identified his clothing so the police would know who to look for. He could have been armed, which presents a safety issue to every responding unit. Otherwise, the dispatcher asked the right questions, though the tone should have been entirely different.

    Something tells me I’m going to be hearing this call in future training seminars on how to improve “call taking.” We get these examples all the time.

  • Dayna

    The 911 dispatcher sucked. There is of course a time to be professional, but this girl was terrified and to be honest the right questions weren’t asked in the first few seconds of the call. Amanda had to offer vital info because the operator didn’t do it herself.The dispatcher was more anxious to get the off the phone and let police wrap up the rest. Just terrible. You could hear the confusion and desperation from Amanda. Shame on the 911 dispatcher.

  • Amanda Luke

    First off, if the dispatcher wasn’t a cop, as they aren’t in Akron, THAT is a huge problem. On the other hand, the girl identified that she was in a neighbor’s house across the street. The dispatcher told her to stay there. She was obviously in a safe place at the time.

    • Cassy_Again

      “Obviously” safe? The woman was pulled from a public venue a decade ago…there is no “safe”. What if her kidnapper returned, had a gun, attacked the neighbor, harmed his other captives?

  • walterc

    When seconds count, the police are only minutes away. “We’ll send someone when we have a car.” Reminds of the joke where the guy calls and says there is someone in his garage and the dispatcher says no is available to respond. so the guy waits 5 minutes call 911 again and says I just shot someone that broke into my garage. Cops from all directions show up and arrest the burglar. They they say to homeowner “You said you shot someone.” To which the homeowner “and you said you didn’t have anyone to respond. I guess we’re both liars.”

  • NCRelite

    not surprising

  • $27789750

    It’s so startling that most people would have been as stunned as this dispatcher was.

  • Holly Briley

    There is just no excuse for the way this operator spoke. Yes, they are taught to remain calm but to say “I told you” and the entire tone of the call..shameful. This operator sounded almost annoyed in having to deal with Amanda. Thinking a new career path is needed for this one. Even Amanda registered in her voice the callousness of this operator.

    • arrow2010

      Isn’t there a union for dispatchers?

  • © Sponge


  • dagnytaggart

    In defense of the call taker, the Amanda Berry sounded like she was close to becoming hysterical, as trauma like she’s experienced might cause. The call taker might not have been all warm and fuzzy, and I think she should have stayed on the line, but her no-nonsense voice probably at least helped to keep Amanda from falling apart, which could have been bad for her. The call taker might need some additional training, but as it sound like they are limited in what info they have to give to caller, I think demanding her firing is extreme.

  • Kitty Myers

    Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t see how the dispatcher did anything wrong. She was calm and tried to calm Amanda. She got the info; she wasn’t curt or rude or impatient with Amanda. I think she did just fine.

  • Iexpectmore

    I believe the dispatcher cursed at her at 1:59 of the actual call when hanging up. This could have easily sent her back into a victimized mentality.

    • Lucreza Borgia

      I also clearly heard “fucking bitch”

  • rbattman

    Lesson learned, don’t say you were kidnapped, tell the dispatcher you are a victim of discrimination or that you are witnessing a crime against the environment. That should make it a priority call.

  • Murphy Linn Spears

    He probably thought it was a joke given the number of nut jobs that call 911. Cut him some slack.

  • o0Nighthawk0o

    I listened to the call and I can’t hear anything that the dispatcher did wrong. She/He took the call, got the address and dispatched an officer. While the person did sound uncaring to a certain extent, in that job they have to be. Also, in a city such as Cleveland, how many other calls were coming in that this dispatcher had handle. We don’t know. From the sounds of things, it was busy.

  • AMSilver

    That call was terrible. The lack of concern and empathy aside, there was so much more information she should’ve gotten. Who was the caller with now? (If the kidnapper came back and the girl was with an 80-year-old grandmother the situation would have been much different than if the woman was with a 25-year-old bodybuilder) Was she inside? Could she lock doors? Was there anyone else in the house she had escaped from? (The fact that there were two other victims still in the house was very relevant to how quickly the police might want to respond: even if the caller was safe/hidden at the neighbor’s house, the kidnapper could return and relocate the other victims. Otherwise, there might have been people in the house who might have been unable to stop the victim from escaping – someone too old, too young, distracted by television, asleep, etc – but could at any moment contact the kidnapper and prompt his return.) Did the kidnapper have any accomplices? Also, since the police were responding, it would be very relevant for them to know who they were likely to encounter when they got there. The dispatcher should have asked if the kidnapper carried a gun, or had access to other weapons. If the kidnapper returned before the police arrived, or while the police were on the scene, knowing whether they were likely to be dealing with an armed opponent would be very important for the safety of both the victim, the neighbors, and the officers. Was the caller injured, did she need medical care of any kind? You really can’t expect people calling 911 to spontaneously provide all of the information that might be needed by 1st responders as people in situations that require emergency response tend to be emotional, hyped full of adrenaline, distracted, or trusting that if the information they might have is relevant, the 911 operator would ask for it. It’s the dispatcher’s job to ask all the relevant questions so that the officers who arrive on the scene have all the information they need. In this case, the dispatcher failed completely.

  • Chris Chambers

    If all you did was take calls of supposed emergencies (many of which are completely bogus…needing help with a burger order or some such silliness) I can understand the operator taking the pertinent information and handling the call in a neutral manner. It would not have been helpful for him to be freaking out any. The caller didn’t need a freaking out operator, but someone with a calm demeanor (even if it sounds cold listening as a third party).

  • TJ

    Why did she have to talk to 911 anyways, was not Charles’ calling good enough.

    • John Public

      wow – just wow

      work in a 911 center? great to know you excuse poor performance

      this wouldnt have cut it in a SERVICE SUPPORT center, let alone a place where people are dispatched to save LIVES


      • TJ

        Where no other people that could call it had to be the victim. They might have even got a few dozen calls when the neighborhood found out what was happening and when the cops where not there in 1 minute.

  • ZoriahShepard

    On the one hand it’s nice that you guys have such high expectations of your 911 operators. But please remember: we are still human. 911 is for the most part a very thankless job and it’s rare when our job is brought to light and praised. Most people only think about us when a dispatcher fucks up. So while you go off half-cocked and raise hell for someone’s job, that’s still a person on the other end of that line doing their best for someone in a very rare situation.

    • Misanthrope

      Goin’ out on a limb here , but maybe the issue is that WAS her best?
      Or are you saying we should thank her and then she’ll do better?

  • LegalizeShemp

    “Hey missy, you got the wrong number, I’m on break, you probably called 912”

  • FlatFoot

    In my 25-year career as a LEO I have been temporarily stationed at the 911 call-center from time to time while recovering from on the job injuries. It’s an easy position and a hard position at the same time. The pressure is intense — especially in a big city 911 call-center. The supervisor scrutiny is oppressive. The price for making a small mistake can potentially be utterly life altering for you and even your entire family if you have one. And the havoc that is wreaked on a 911 call-takers/dispatchers mind and emotions from everything they are exposed to and suppressing natural human instincts and inclinations can be very pronounced over time.

    911 call-takers/dispatchers are trained to be robots — so to speak.
    Or, to be Mr. Spock’s, if you prefer.
    ‘Logical response’ trumps ‘Natural response’ in every possible way as a job requirement from the get-go.

    They are trained to suppress emotions, stay cool and calm, and avoid extraneous conversation.
    They are also trained to be extremely ‘liability conscious’.

    It is demanded that it be so by the very position itself if you don’t want your 911 call-takers/dispatchers to burn out double quick — or your department to be sued into oblivion by scumbag Attorney ambulance chasers using ‘bad advice’ from a call-takers/dispatchers to ‘pad’ their lawsuits for maximum awards.

    But they are always definitely human — and they definitely must suppress a lot of emotion(s) and other natural inclinations and knee-jerk responses in order to maintain continuity and professionalism when handling emergency calls for assistance.

    You very well can’t have 911 dispatchers getting emotionally involved and/or even freaking out when emergencies are being reported over the telephone as crucial details can be and most likely will be misunderstood or completely missed when lives are on the line.

    Then there’s the ‘vested’ 911 call-takers/dispatchers — 911 dispatchers for many years answering those infernal telephones that never stop ringing 24/7/365. The 911 system is abused rampantly, especially in big cities such as Cleveland. And just when you think you’ve heard it all — along comes a 911 call like this one. ‘Rare’ would be a colossal understatement.

    It wasn’t a ‘stellar performance’ — but the 911 call-taker did an adequate job given the totality of the circumstances in the moment.

    • Jerome Goolsby

      No offense but telling someone who calls in on an EMERGENCY line that you’ll send a car as soon as one is available is not what I call an adequate job….that to me is failure. And if Cleveland’s public safety services are THAT screwed up they need a major overhaul PDQ.

      • Anita Long Vacation

        Because a dispatcher can conjure up a unit out of the thin air? Or perhaps he/she can pull it out of their butt? The economy has left many departments significantly understaffed.

      • FlatFoot

        Would it have made everyone feel any better if the dispatcher had crapped a patrol unit right there in his/her chair and then sent it on over straight away?

        Yeah. Probably.
        Probably a lot better.

        But not possible.

        Public safety resources are finite. That is definitely not the fault of 911 call-takers/dispatchers.

  • neoface

    Dispatcher definitely lacking empathy, it is hard to digest a situation of someone missing for 10 years and calling for help. Not sure how much training these people get before being hired. Just saying….

  • XOXO_86

    I personally would love to see this dispatcher fired for their completely indifferent attitude on that call. Regardless of how many calls they get, this is the job they chose. They knew this job would be strenuous going into it. All I’m saying is, if the dispatcher did or didn’t believe the caller is a separate subject that only he/she will know the real truth of. But the fact is they didn’t SOUND like they cared. Just atleast sound like you care! That’s what I’m bothered about. And cursing at the end of the call? Completely uncalled for. Now will a firing actually happen? I’m not sure. If it was any other case that the public didn’t know about, I’d say probably not. Maybe a write up if the caller or caller’s family chose to complain. But since this call has now been heard worldwide (literally), I wonder if the public attention will force the department’s hand to take corrective action against the dispatcher.

    • Anita Long Vacation

      This isn’t Verizon Wireless. It’s 9-1-1. Dispatchers are not counselors. He may have had a chilly bedside manner, but he got units there fast, and that’s what he needed to do.

  • Jennifer Jackson-jones

    I could not believe the indifference of 911 operator……she sounded like she couldn’t wait to get her off the phone….like she was a nuisance….we’ll send a car when one is available?????Are u kidding me!!! Then she ends the call instead of staying on the phone with Amanda, when she needed that life line….WHICH was SO OBVIOUS!!!!!

  • Im_Done

    I can’t believe how many people on this thread are making excuses for piss poor job performance.

    • holdmewhileimnaked

      i bet it is the same person, or a small group of people, posting under different names.

  • alex

    that person better be fired! how dare the person who is in charge of whether that girl got help sooner than later talks like its not big deal “when a car is available”. FIRE THAT DISPATCHER!

  • Tamara Gher

    Under fire??? The dispatcher should be “FIRED” immediately. I have never heard such a lack of compassion in my life. You can hear how much Amanda wanted the operator to stay on the line. I am outraged by the insensitivity displayed by this operator.

    • Mvubu88

      she is an information gatherer and dispatcher, not a counselor. Berry hung up and police where on scene in 2 min.

  • Betty Lamb

    The dispatcher is a he not a she. Amanda was the one to say good-bye and hang up the phone. The dispatcher got all the pertinent information, reassured her numerous times the police were coming. He called her Dear and was obviously happy speaking with Amanda as he gave a small chuckle. Wow so many critics here. I would like to see all of you do his job. How do any of you nah sayer know that the cops hadn’t pulled up and Amanda saw them and that’s why she said bye? Wait until the full story comes out before jumping to conclusions please. I’ve listened to CNN and HLN ALL day and not once has anyone criticized the operator. As far as I can tell by the call, the dispatcher is trying to draw her attention back to the information he needs through all the hysteria going on in the background. Amanda told him she was FREE and at the neighbors house using their phone. Again, it was Amanda who ended the call and said goodbye.

  • Tcamp

    I don’t need dispatch to give any special treatment. Courtesy and empathy do not fall into that category. If they were busy and only had so many operators for so many calls, then the least you can do is utilize the time that you have to weigh the situation a little better. Snarky and short are never the correct response to someone in distress- If you can’t understand that, find another job where it isn’t necessary.

  • shayna

    This is awful!!!! I was held up at gun point in Akron Ohio and the dispatcher hung up on me because I didnt provide an address in the neighborhood I was held up in. Ohio 911 dispatchers are TERRIBLE!!! When I told her the assailants were black she asked me how did I know they were black and I then told her because I am black. My 911 tape would make a grown man cry. I thought I was going to die. They all need fired or retrained. So glad those girls are safe.

  • Betty Lamb

    Amanda was the one to end the communication between her and the dispatcher. SHE said bye. The operator is a HE not a SHE. How do we know Amanda wasn’t looking outside and saw a police car pull up? We don’t so let’s not jump the gun and burn this operator at the stake already. Let’s be thankful these beautiful young ladies are alive and the police DID get there.

    • Chase C.

      Thank you for being rational and actually listening to the call before posting a comment attacking the guy.

      • holdmewhileimnaked

        i listened to the call. it was bad. even the edited call. at the very very least that dispatcher needs quite a bit of unpaid retraining.

        • Chase C.

          We sure do have a lot of qualified 911 dispatch supervisors in this thread.

  • disqus_XR2ISR0ifu

    not going to answer questions to read dumbass

  • MyCowboyWays

    Couple of nights in that hell hole kidnappers basement should soften up this stupid dispatcher.

  • Missy2Cats

    This dispatcher sounds like she is pissed about her break time being interrupted. Another fine example of gov’t in action.

  • David Henderson

    I had to call 911 once when I did guard duty (fire watch) at a local mill. Some people starting shooting widows out of the mill. I called 911. The police department is about 3 miles from the mill. The 911 operator rerouted my call back though country and sent a cop from the other side of county. It took him 45 minutes to get there driving over 100 miles an hour. The shooters were long gone by that time. The mill lawyers file a law suit over it. 911 is a joke. You are better off calling the 7 digit local number to the police, fire and the EMS

  • Charlie Williams

    This dispatcher was unprofessional and show a total lack empathy for a victim under difficult circumstances (potentially still dangerous situation). 911 dispatchers are very highly trained in most large metropolitan cities.There are accreditation standards that must be followed. Even if dispatcher wanted to release the line, she shouldn’t have since the victim wanted to remain in contact(for a sense of safety), Dispatchers have other tools at their disposal to help verify the likelyhood that the call is likely valid.i.e. call history to residence, tone of victim’s voice, etc. No where are dispatchers taught to be callous with people on the other end of the line.

  • Environment1

    The dispatcher that Charles Ramsey talks to is just as awful. He’s clearly bored and asking dumb questions!

  • Environment1

    Can you imagine if Amanda was in the house and got access to a phone and was still INSIDE trapped and got that kind of response? Torture! I can’t imagine how frustrating to not be heard for 10 years and then have some lazy operator not want to give you the time of day.

  • rabun1016

    I can’t listen to the call without getting mad at that operator. For goodness sake, lady, send a unit, and reassure the caller it’s on the way.

  • Jerome Goolsby

    That dispatcher needs to be FIRED…..and the sooner the better.

  • Anita Long Vacation

    I realize everyone is looking for someone to blame, because that’s human nature. Was the dispatcher oozing with sweetness and compassion? No. Was the released audio edited? Yep.

    But here’s the reason all you mud slingers need to hush up: Police were on scene within 2 minutes of the call. TWO MINUTES. Regardless of the call takers level of compassion, he did his part and got the officers on scene quickly. That’s the role of the public safety dispatcher: to collect and disseminate information quickly in order to preserve public safety. Unless you work in the profession, you have NO CLUE, so don’t try to pretend you do. It’s nothing like what you watch in the movies, kids. Sheesh.


    A BLACK WOMAN, OBVIOUSLY: Come right out and say it, she is a black woman with a bad attitude and this was a white girl.

    A LOT of black women hate white women because black men would rather have a white woman than a fat, ugly, diva, full-of-attitude, shopaholic black hog —which is what this dispatcher sounded like.


    • john mason

      I know this was a very serious sad story, but your unfettered rage and your imagry is making me giggle. Fat, ugly,shopaholic….oh dear! It’s staring again,


    The dispatcher had a bad attitude from the very beginning.
    Anyone could tell from Amanda’s voice that she was serious and almost hysterical.

    The dispatcher is a bad-attitude black diva … millions of them in Cleveland and we certainly don’t need one as a dispatcher.

    Let her get on the Obamasite welfare gravy train like most of her sub-human, criminal-breeding sisters.

  • Brian Heath

    This dispatcher called Amanda Berry a f-ing b as he hung up. You can also hear him laugh a bit after she again tells him who she is and that she’s been on the news for ten years.