Wrong Station Dispatched in Death Near D.C. Fire Station

D.C. Council member Tommy Wells confirmed that a 911 dispatcher sent the wrong station to respond to a medical emergency that resulted in the death of a man near another station. 

Last month, 77-year-old Medric Mills collapsed in a shopping center parking lot along Rhode Island Avenue NE while walking with his daughter to a computer store. 

Mills' daughter, Maria, ran across the street to Engine 26 while others dialed 911. The firefighter she spoke with told her that before he and others deployed, he would first have to check with his lieutenant. 

When he returned, he told Maria his lieutenant had denied her request for help. 

Medric Mills died at the scene. 

An investigation revealed that instead of sending Engine 26, the 911 dispatcher deployed a station on to Rhode Island Avenue NW instead.  

This is not the first time someone has died in or around a D.C. firehouse. Four years ago, Andre Rudder knocked on the door of Engine Co. No. 7 complaining of chest pains, but an EMT told him that she could not help him. Rudder died outside waiting for help.

There are no regulations preventing firefighters from taking immediate action in a situation like that, officials said. 

D.C. Fire and EMS spokesman Tim Wilson said in an official statement, "If it is determined that proper protocols were not followed at the conclusion of our investigation, then appropriate action will be taken."

The lieutenant responsible for the address mix up, Kellene Davis, was placed on desk duty pending the outcome of the investigation and has reportedly submitted a request for retirement.

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