WEST HAVEN, Utah (ABC4) – Bodycam footage was released Tuesday, Mar. 7, from the Weber County Sheriff’s Office for an incident where a toddler was locked inside of an apartment complex alone. After reviewing the footage, WCSO said that responding officers had violated the department’s policy.
In early February, a two-year-old toddler was locked inside an apartment in the Bria apartment complex in West Haven, and the couple was locked outside. They tried for hours to get inside, to no avail.
Kaitlynd Burtchell and her husband attempted to get into their apartment by contacting locksmiths, the apartment office, emergency maintenance, their security system and 911.
After being told there was nothing deputies could do because it “wasn’t an emergency,” deputies eventually responded to the scene but bodycam footage shows how they acted.
The bodycam footage released shows officers making comments to Burtchell that WSCO stated were, “unprofessional and not helpful in resolving the problem.”
This included a statement from one officer that said, “If your child were in imminent danger, it would be a different story.”
The bodycam footage also shows officers standing around talking about unrelated matters. When Burtchell asked why they were there, the deputy responded, “because we’re allowed to be here, this is a public area.” He then told Burtchell to “go over there” to worry about her child.
Deputies also told Burtchell that they would be unable to help as “they can’t help do property damage.”
Following the internal review, the deputies were found to have violated the WSCO’s Standards of Conduct Policy, specifically by providing discourteous, disrespectful or discriminatory treatment to any member of the county.
One such comment included a statement saying that Burtchell could be in violation of 911 abuse for using the emergency line in this situation.
“Deputies on scene were encouraged to ‘not hesitate to make calls up the chain of command’ any time there is any doubt, regardless of the time day,” read the internal review. “This information will be shared with all deputies of the Office.”
The WSCO also has a “liability and financial release” form to give deputies permission to damage property.
The internal review was also sent to each deputy’s supervisor for discipline. The internal review closed by saying that lessons learned and improvements made would be shared with all deputies of the office.