ER Dispatch logs of fatal shooting made public
by Heather Muller , 4/21/2006
Excerpts from the Eureka Police Department’s dispatch logs for April 14 provide insight into the EPD’s fatal shooting of Cheri Moore in her G Street apartment after a standoff with police.
The entries, which contain a rough timeline of the standoff and shooting as noted by dispatchers on duty at the time, were found Friday in media logs that are available for public viewing at the EPD’s C Street headquarters.
It is important to note that the dispatch log is not a transcript of radio communications between police officers. It does, however, provide a description of key events as they are reported to have occurred.
Some details of the incident had been blacked out by the EPD, such as in the first entry, at 9:56 a.m.
“??? has told mental health that she has purchased a 12 (gauge) flare gun and will kill everyone in her (building) on Mother’s Day, is despondent over the death of her son 27 (years) ago. (Subject) also told mental health that she is being … harassed by her landlord ??? … . (The reporting party) received call from the (subject) less than 15 (minutes) ago and she advised she would be extremely hostile to law enforcement if they contact her.”
At 10:13 a.m., Moore’s apartment was first entered by police. A police officer called a Code 33, or emergency situation, saying that she was “brandishing a weapon (possibly) (a) flare gun.”
Within minutes, G Street was blocked at Fifth and Sixth streets. Two entries were made regarding the possibility that the subject was in possession of a “38,” possibly referring to a .38 caliber handgun.
One officer reported trying to get a shotgun. Another requested a ballistics shield.
At 10:19 a.m., two officers confirmed that the weapon was an “orange flare pistol.”
At 10:32 a.m., dispatchers noted that Moore “called mental health stating she was in pain and wanted medication. Doesn’t believe (officers) are police (officers).”
Two minutes later, the SWAT team was paged.
The fire department was called to stand by “for fire hazard” at Sixth and G streets, and at 10:41 a.m. Moore was reported throwing items out of her window.
Two minutes later, crisis negotiators were paged.
By 10:55 a.m., a police officer was on the roof across from Moore’s third-floor window being asked if he had a clear view of her apartment.
At 11:07 a.m., an officer reported that a “(subject) has (suspect) on the phone on scene here.” Fifteen minutes later, another officer requested “Deny origination on phone, they are working on this will call back in 15 (minutes).”
Members of the SWAT team reported they were en route at 11:29 a.m. Dispatch notes at 11:30 a.m. stated, “(Subject) has Crohn’s Disease, inflammatory bowel syndrome.” It was noted that Moore was wearing a neck brace.
At 11:32 a.m., SWAT team members were at the scene. “Deny is complete. Phone inside is ???.” The officer on the roof said Moore was pointing the flare gun at her chest and threatening to discharge it in the apartment.
At 11:43 a.m., dispatch reported, “(Subject) called him for pack of cigarettes and will come down peacefully if he can deliver cigarettes, referred to hostage negotiators.”
One minute later, an ambulance was staged at Sixth and G streets.
At 11:47 a.m., this entry was made: “??? is (en route) (with) cigarettes will contact T56. (Suspect) phoned a friend (unknown) name who then phoned ??? who phoned 911. Initial call from (suspect) to her friend (occurred) approximately 20 (minutes) ago.”
A minute after noon, SWAT team members were in place, but reported poor visibility of the apartment. The officer on the roof reported Moore was brandishing a baseball bat.
The SWAT team entered the building at 12:15 p.m. Crisis negotiators were on and off the phone with Moore twice over the next 12 minutes. Negotiators were “unable to communicate due to the loud music.”
At 12:26 p.m., this entry: “She was just at the window with the gun in her right hand.” Also at that time, “light and sound” were authorized at the threshold, an apparent reference to flash-bangs.
Two minutes later, a SWAT team member reportedly said, “If you see her at the window empty handed let me know.”
A second entry for 12:28 p.m. stated crisis negotiators “holding off calling.”
At 12:31 p.m. an officer reported, “She is at the center of the room at this time.”
A SWAT team member said “The go signal should be she’s at the window empty handed.”
The officer said again that she was in the middle of the room.
At 12:33 p.m. and 0 seconds, the officer on the roof across the street said, “She is at the north window (and) her hands are empty,” according to the log.
Also recorded at 12:33 p.m. and 0 seconds was the last word of the standoff: “Go.”
Twenty-seconds later, dispatch reported “Shots fired (suspect) down,” and medical assistance was called into Moore’s apartment.
It arrived within a minute. Moore was pronounced dead at the scene.
(Megan McCulloch contributed to this report.)
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