Woman blames DPD dispatchers for no 911 response after break-in call

Image 1 of 3

A neighbor calls 911 after spotting a break-in next door.

When the homeowner raced back, the police still had not shown up. She called 911 again, but still saw no squad car. Finally police arrived, after she called a detective directly. Now she is asking went wrong at dispatch.

Taylor Harrell, a Detroit district delegate recently moved to a her east side neighborhood from the suburbs hoping to make a difference

"I got this house in this particular neighborhood because I see potential in this neighborhood, and I want to restore the pride on Detroit's east side,"

She wasn't home Sunday night when her neighbor noticed something strange, several men breaking through her door around 10 p.m. The neighbor says she called 911, and then called Harrell, who rushed home.

"I called the police again because I noticed that they hadn't arrived," Harrell said. "When I called she said OK they will make a police report. And so about 30 minutes had passed, I called again, because the police hadn't come, and I thought they would be here by now, and they said they had no report in the system."

An hour passed by and still no police. Harrell was worried someone could still be inside the home. She called again.

"The 911 operator asked for the name and the address, of who it was and where the location was, and she said 'What do you want now?'" Harrell said. "And that really ticked me off."

She finally decided to check the place out herself, finding her hot water heater and furnace moved to the front door, but no one was in sight.

"If the people were still in the house, I may not have made it," Harrell said. "Because the police never came for me, and that makes me sad."

Harrell says the first 911 call was made at about 10 p.m. Sunday, and police didn't show up until after midnight. But she isn't blaming police, she's blaming dispatchers.

FOX 2 contacted Detroit police for comment. They say they are reviewing the 911 calls from that night, and Michael Woody of DPD Media Relations said in a statement:

"We at the Detroit Police Department value our community members and we do our best to make sure that each and every one of them is heard when in times of need. We dispatch our officers through careful evaluation and prioritization of all emergency calls. All calls for service matter to us and we constantly strive to respond as quickly and efficiently as possible leaving no call unaddressed."

Harrell understands her situation may not have been the highest priority at the time, but wishes she could've had at least a little more guidance from dispatchers.

"To the 911 operators, I would want them to take a step back and think of who is on the other end of that phone," Harrell said. "I could be their daughter; I could be their sister or their son. I want them to think about that before they ask 'What do you want now?' I want you to come and help me."