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Brier police officer fired for responding to Mukilteo shooting that left 3 dead

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A Brier, WA police officer is speaking out after being fired for responding to a deadly shooting in which other officers were asking for help in a neighboring city.

Dan Anderson, a 25 year law enforcement veteran stated that it’s unusual to respond to more than one call during a 10-hour shift, so he doesn’t understand why aiding a neighboring department is cause for being fired, according to KIRO 7. Most of his career was as a Washington State Trooper.

Former Brier police officer Dan Anderson.  Credit: Cox Media Group.
Former Brier police officer Dan Anderson. Credit: Cox Media Group.

“Chief (Mike) Catlett came in at about 4:30 in the morning on Monday morning in the last hour of my shift and told me it wasn’t working out and he let me go,” Anderson said.

“When I asked him why he said it was because I left the city of Brier unprotected to respond to the Mukilteo shooting,” Anderson continued.

Anderson claims he was one of the first officers on scene and he entered the house with two Mountlake Terrace officers.

The shooting left three teenagers dead and a fourth seriously injured.

“I think [the chief] was trying to do right by the city of Brier and I agree with that philosophically but ultimately when officers are asking for help, how can you expect a good officer to turn a deaf ear to that?” Anderson said. “I can’t understand that and if that means it’s time for me to find another line of work, so be it.”

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8 COMMENTS

  1. This is not unique. Many people that are in charge lose sight of cops backing each other, be it ignorance or politics or both.
    Throwback to 1982, Cochise County, AZ: Then Governor Bruce Babbitt refused to let his DPS Officers assist the Cochise County Sheriff’s Office during a deadly encounter with an armed mob in Miracle Valley, AZ. This confontation resulted in the beating death of Deputy Jeff Brown. But a lone DPS Officer, Officer Kenneth Curfman, ignored the order and drove the 15 miles to the aid of the SO. Others then followed.
    As he expected, his career came to an end for violating an order.
    Curfman received respect and admiration from Sheriff Judd and I admire and respect Off. Anderson for his dedication.
    But admiration & respect doesn’t pay bills or put food on the table.
    (“Shootout at Miracle Valley,” William R. Daniel, 2009.

  2. I would encourage all interested parties to contact the chief of police and the mayor of Brier, WA in support of Officer Anderson.
    Feel free to plagiarize any portion of the letter that I have already sent.
    mcatlett@ci.brier.wa.us
    rcolinas@ci.brier.wa.us

    Dear Chief Catlett,

    I am writing in support of Officer Anderson who was unceremoniously fired for assisting other officers involved in a deadly shooting. Although I can appreciate the reasoning behind staying on post, as I myself am a retired police officer, I find it difficult understanding your priorities in this situation. When does routine patrol take precedence over the protection of the lives of human beings that include fellow police officers?
    Drastic times call for drastic measures and surely exceptions can be made for exceptional circumstances. I would hope that, after further review of the facts, such considerations could be made in Officer Anderson’s case. If not, I’m sure another agency would be happy to have such a dedicated hero. Your loss would be their gain and the city of Brier would be the poorer for it.
    I am copying Mayor Colinas on this to make him aware of the public support Officer Anderson.

    Sincerely,
    Patrick K. Harding

  3. The primary job of any police officer is the protection of life.. this idiot police chief had no right to criticise this brave officer.

  4. What happens when a Brier officer needs help. I hope neighboring agencies don’t have the same attitude. Brier Chief, Pull your head out.

  5. Here in South Africa we would be only to grateful for someone going out of their way like that! It’s downright disgusting that a police officer would be fired for DOING HIS JOB!

  6. That police chief needs to have his head examined. If they had some sort of protocol already in place, stating that officers were not supposed to respond to neighboring suburbs when a call goes out for additional assistance, then there should have been protocol what could happen if the officer disobeyed. If a first offense or unusual circumstances, maybe a verbal or written reprimand. Then if protocol was disobeyed a second or third time, then maybe would warrant firing. If none of this was in place and officers were unaware of these restrictions, then the firing was way out of line. What if he hadn’t responded and the suspects had gotten the upper hand and shot officers or the public. Then would that pfficer have gotten in trouble for not going? That police department and chief need some common sense.

  7. This news has made it all the way to Hawaii! Aren’t you glad that chief isn’t on a battlefield in a war zone with fellow soldiers. Can’t you hear it now, “Oh, I see you are being attacked in your fox hole but I can’t help because this is the fox hole I am assigned to.”

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