Peterson's 9-1-1 Call

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Than Fiction:
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Peterson Case


"We were just talking and finishing our drinks, and then she said, 'I gotta go in because I got a conference call in the morning.' And the last I saw her was when I was there and she was just walking here, and that's it. That was the last time I saw Kathleen alive -- no -- she was alive when I found her... but, barely."
-- Peterson faux pas from Lestrade's film

"When I called 9-1-1, I thought she'd fallen down the stairs. As far as I know, that's what happened."
-- Peterson

Audio Recording of Peterson's Call      

December 9, 2001 -- 2:40 AM
Mary Allen -- operator

911: Durham 9-1-1. Where is your emergency?

PETERSON: 1810 Cedar Street. Please!

911: What's wrong?

PETERSON: My wife had an accident. She's still breathing!

911: What kind of accident?

PETERSON: She fell down the stairs. She's still breathing! Please come!

911: Is she conscious?


911: Is she conscious?

PETERSON: No, she's not conscious. Please!

911: How many stairs did she fall down?

PETERSON: What? Huh???

911: How many stairs did --

PETERSON: …the back stairs!…

911: How many stairs?

PETERSON: … oh… ah… ah…

911: Calm down, sir. Calm down.

PETERSON: Oh 15, 20. I don't know. Please! Get somebody here, right away. Please!

911: Okay somebody's dispatching the ambulance while I'm asking you questions.

PETERSON: It's off of a… It's in Forest Hills! Okay? Please! Please!

911: Okay sir? Somebody else is dispatching the ambulance. Is she awake now?

PETERSON: … ah… ah…

911: Hello? …Hello?

PETERSON: … ah… ah… mmmm… aaaah… oh… aaaah...

(dial tone)

2:46 AM
Tonya Pierce -- operator

911: Durham 9-1-1. Where is your emergency?

PETERSON: Where are they?! This is 1810 Cedar -- wh --. She's not breathing! Please! Please would you hurry up!

911: Sir?

PETERSON: Can you hear me?

911: Sir? Sir, calm down. They're on their way. Can you tell me for sure she's not breathing? Sir...?
(dial tone) Hello…? Hello?

Red Neurons