Robert Powell Ryan Moats Dash Cam Part 1 of 2
This story is appalling, sad and disturbing. Our prayers go out to Ryan Moats and his family. The police officer, Robert Powell, who stopped Ryan Moats from seeing his dying mother was obviously on a power trip. Listen to how the officer speaks disrespectfully to the family members who are dealing with the tragic loss of a dying relative. The police officer has his weapon drawn immediately and threatens Ryan Moat's wife who has her arms raised. This officer should receive a harsher punishment than getting paid leave. The police officer delayed Ryan Moats who was never able to say goodbye to his mother before she died. Ryan Moats gave a radio interview with WFAN after the incident. Ryan Moats explains that he had his hazard lights on his car while driving into the hospital. Everyone pleaded with the police officer to let Moats enter the hospital. The head nurse and another police officer asked for the officer to let Moats inside the hospital but he wouldn't let him inside. Dallas police Chief David Kunkle apologizes to Ryan Moats and his family. The officer offered an apology but he is sorry that the information about his discriminatory actions has spread around the world. This officer is sorry that he may lose his job. During the radio interview Ryan Moats is asked if he is going to sue because the police officer pulled the gun on him and his family members. Ryan Moats said that he was still suffering after the burial of his mother-in-law and could not get those moments with his mother-in-law back.
The Dallas Police Department confirmed Thursday that an officer drew a gun on Houston Texans running back Ryan Moats and his wife after stopping them to give them a ticket even as they begged to hurry to the bedside of her mother.
As he rushed his family to the hospital, Moats, 26, rolled through a red light. A Dallas police officer pulled their vehicle over outside the emergency room at the Baylor Regional Medical Center at Plano.
"He was pointing a gun at me as soon as I got out of the car," said Moats' wife, Tamishia.
Seconds later, Moats and his wife explained that her mother was dying inside the hospital.
"You really want to go through this?" Moats pleaded. "My mother-in-law is dying. Right now!"
Dallas police officials said Officer Robert Powell told his commanders he believed he was doing his job and that he drew his gun but did not point it.
Dallas Police Chief David Kunkle said Powell was not necessarily acting improperly when he pulled his weapon but that once he realized what was happening he should have put the gun back and offered to help the family in any way.
Kunkle apologized to the family and announced that Powell would be on paid leave pending an internal investigation.
"His behavior, in my opinion, did not exhibit the common sense, the discretion, the compassion that we expect our officers to exhibit," Kunkle said.
"It's hard to find the right word and still be professional in my role as the police chief. But the behavior was not appropriate."
Powell, 25, spent several minutes writing Moats a ticket and threatened him with arrest during the incident last week. The scene was captured by a dashboard video camera.
"I can screw you over," the officer told Moats. "I'd rather not do that."
Moats' mother-in-law, Jonetta Collinsworth, 45, was struggling with breast cancer that had spread throughout her body.
About midnight March 17, the Moatses received word that they needed to hurry back to the hospital if they wanted to see Collinsworth before she died. The couple, along with Collinsworth's father and an aunt, jumped into the vehicle and headed back toward the hospital. They exited the highway just down the street from the hospital.
Moats turned on his hazard lights. He stopped at a red light, where, he said, the only nearby motorist signaled for him to go ahead. He went through. Powell, watching traffic from a hidden spot, flipped on his lights and sirens. In less than a minute, he caught up to the Moats and followed for about 20 more seconds as Moats found a parking spot outside the emergency room.
Tamishia, 27, was the first out. Powell drew his gun and yelled at her to get back in.
"My mom is dying," she said. Tamishia Moats and her great-aunt ignored the officer and headed into the hospital.
Powell lectured Moats, telling him at one point, "If you want to keep this going, I'll just put you in handcuffs and I'll take you to jail."
Hospital security guards arrived and told Powell that the Moatses' relative really was upstairs dying. Another hospital staffer came out and spoke with a Plano police officer who had arrived.
"Hey, that's the nurse," the Plano officer told Powell. "She said that the mom's dying right now."
"All right," Powell replied. "I'm almost done."
It had been about 13 minutes.
Moats and Collinsworth's father went into the hospital, where they found Collinsworth had died, with her daughter at her side.
The ticket issued to Moats was dismissed, a police spokesman said.
Dallas Police Officer Makes Death Even Worse (2/2)
A police officer was placed on administrative leave Thursday over a traffic stop involving an NFL player whom he kept in a hospital parking lot and threatened to arrest while his mother-in-law died inside the building.
Officer Robert Powell also drew his gun during the March 18 incident involving Houston Texans running back Ryan Moats in the Dallas suburb of Plano, police said.
"I can screw you over," he said at one point in the videotaped incident. When another officer came with word that Moats' mother-in-law was indeed dying, Powell's response was: "All right. I'm almost done.''
Dallas Police Chief David Kunkle apologized to the family and announced that Powell would be on paid leave pending an internal investigation.
"When we at the command staff reviewed the tape, we were embarrassed, disappointed," Kunkle said. "It's hard to find the right word and still be professional in my role as the police chief. But the behaviour was not appropriate.''
Powell, 25, a three-year member of the force, stopped Moats' SUV outside Baylor Regional Medical Center at Plano after Moats rolled through a red light.
Police officials said Powell told his commanders he believed he was doing his job, and that he drew his gun but did not point it. Kunkle said Powell was not necessarily acting improperly when he pulled his weapon out, but that once he realized what was happening should have put the gun back, apologized and offered to help the family in any way.
"His behaviour, in my opinion, did not exhibit the common sense, the discretion, the compassion that we expect our officers to exhibit," Kunkle said.
Moats' wife, who was in the car along with other relatives, said Powell pointed his weapon at her.
"He was pointing a gun at me as soon as I got out of the car,'' Tamishia Moats told The Dallas Morning News.
Ryan Moats told KRLD-FM in Dallas in a phone interview Thursday that after the officer pointed the gun at his wife, he pointed it at him. "I just tried to stay as still as possible to not scare him or do anything to make him react," he said.
He earlier told the newspaper he thought Powell should be fired but backed off that in his radio interview.
"All I know is what he did was wrong," Moats said. "He stole a moment away from me that I can never get back. I'm really not the judge on what should happen to him.''
The Moats family did not immediately return messages left by The Associated Press. Powell did not respond to requests for comment through the Dallas police union.
Video from a dashboard camera inside the officer's vehicle, obtained by Dallas-Fort Worth station WFAA-TV, revealed an intense exchange in which the officer threatened to jail Moats.
He ordered Tamishia Moats, 27, to get back in the SUV, but after pausing for a few seconds, she and another woman rushed into the hospital. She was by the side of her mother, 45-year-old Jonetta Collinsworth, when she died a short time later from breast cancer.
"Get in there," said Powell, yelling at Tamishia Moats as she exited the vehicle. "Let me see your hands!''
"Excuse me, my mom is dying," Tamishia Moats said. "Do you understand?''
Ryan Moats explained that he waited until there was no traffic before proceeding through the red light. When Powell asked for proof of insurance, Moats grew more agitated and told the officer to go find it.
"My mother-in-law is dying! Right now! You're wasting my time!" Moats yelled. "I don't understand why you can't understand that.''
As they argued, the officer got irritated.
"Shut your mouth," the officer said. "You can either settle down and cooperate or I can just take you to jail for running a red light.''
By the time the 26-year-old NFL player received a ticket and a lecture from Powell, about 13 minutes had passed. When he and Collinsworth's father entered the hospital, they learned Collinsworth was dead.
Kunkle said the video showed that Moats and his wife "exercised extraordinary patience, restraint in dealing with the behaviour of our officer.''
"At no time did Mr. Moats identify himself as an NFL football player or expect any kind of special consideration," Kunkle said. ``He handled himself very, very well.''