Officers responding to prank 911 calls is 'dangerous' misuse of resources: police
Chris Fox, CTV News Toronto
Published Thursday, July 13, 2017 5:45PM EDT
Last Updated Thursday, July 13, 2017 6:48PM EDT
A pair of bogus 911 calls, including one for a clogged toilet, have police flush with anger over what they say is a “dangerous” misuse of their resources.
According to Toronto Police spokesperson Mark Pugash, a 911 operator received a call on Wednesday night for a toilet that was left unflushed by a patron at a restaurant.
Pugash said the call was “selfish, ignorant” and “simply unacceptable” given that it could have slowed the response of officers to a legitimate emergency.
“Nobody would argue that what that person did last night was a legitimate use of the emergency phone system,” Pugash said Thursday. “I have worked with emergency operators over the years. They do unbelievable work under incredible pressure but they have to balance a whole variety of things and imagine if they are dealing with someone reporting a unflushed toilet while someone who is in a legitimate emergency is waiting.”
Police did not actually respond to the unflushed toilet call but a few hours later officers did respond to another bogus call, this time for a supposed shooting at a home on Elm Avenue in Rosedale.
Members of the Emergency Task Force attended that call and proceeded to secure the area and gain access to the home only to find nobody inside, Pugash said.
Pugash said that police are investigating that call and will lay criminal charges if they can determine who was responsible for it.
“I am astonished that we would even have to give this lesson but if you are prepared to do something like that be prepared for the criminal consequences,” he said.