It's the Story...of an NFL Player...and a Cop, A Love Story

You would think DISH was talking about a Dallas Cowboys player, but it's actually a Houston Texans player.

It was a minor police chase involving an nfl player, the running of red lights and a rooky cop with an itchy ego.

To say this is a public relations nightmare is probably one of the largest understatements of the year in Dallas.As massivepublic out cry forpunishment to be handed down, Dallas Police Chief David Kunkle called a news conferenceto apologize for the behavior of an officer who detained a distressed family outside a hospital emergency room.

Kunkle said Officer Robert Powellis on paid administrative leave in connection with the incident. According to the dash camPowell stopped a family rushing to visit a dying mother, keeping them for 13 minutes to write a traffic ticket. The woman died before two of the family members were able to see her.

"I am embarrassed and disappointed by the behavior of one of our police officers," the chief told a packed audience of media outlets that included Inside Edition. "His behavior, in my opinion, did not exhibit the common sense, discretion, the compassion that we expect our officers to exhibit."

During the traffic stop, caught on the officer's in-car camera, Powell berated the driver, 26-year-old NFL running back Ryan Moats, and threatened him with arrest for running a traffic light.

Thursday morningat the department's weekly crime meetingmembers of the command staff viewed the video for the first time. The reaction was one of disbelief whileChief Floyd spoke.

"People were just quiet," said Assistant Chief Floyd Simpson, who oversees the city's seven patrol stations. "Just, 'Oh, my God, I can't believe what I just saw.' "

Chief Kunklealso praised Moats and his family for how they handled the officer's behavior.

"They exercised extraordinary patience, restraint, dealing with the behavior of our officer," Kunkle said. "At no time did Mr. Moats identify himself as an NFL football player or expect any kind of special consideration. He handled himself very, very well."


The video shows what happened after Moats, who plays for the Houston Texans, rolled through a red light in Dallas en route to Baylor Regional Medical Center at Plano. Powell switched on his lights and sirens, caught up to the family's SUV, and followed for about 20 seconds as they found a parking spot near the hospital's emergency entrance. (OOHH A whole 20 seconds that ended at a hospital emergency room entrance...that would absolutely signal to DISH that it was time to draw a weapon and threaten folks!)

Moats' mother-in-law, 45-year-old Jonetta Collinsworth, had been struggling with breast cancer. That night family members received word that they needed to hurry to the hospital because she was dying.

An argument followed during which Powell lectured Moats and threatened him with arrest. Lectured and threatened?? His family member was dying and Powell thought that was the right time to lecture and threaten?? Nice move!

Kunkle acknowledged Thursday that Powell also drew his gun at the start of the incident.

"I understand that he admits to drawing his gun but not pointing it," the chief said.

Moats' wife, Tamishia Moats, has said otherwise.

Kunkle said that for Powell to draw his gun at first may be defensible. The SUV had not immediately stopped for him. People were piling out of it. The situation was uncertain.

"But as quickly as possible, he should have holstered his gun and apologized, once he found out what the circumstances were," Kunkle said, "and then tried to accommodate the Moatses the best he could getting access into the hospital."

Instead, Powell spent long minutes exercising his authority over Ryan Moats.

Powell, 25, has not returned calls. He has defended his actions to department officials.

"My understanding is that Officer Powell, even when he saw the videotape, believed he had not acted inappropriately," Kunkle said.

WHAT?? He actually thinks that he didn't so anything wrong?? This guy just might be an idiot.

The video reached the public at largeThursday and itwas clear that most people disagreed with Powell'sactions.Thousands of comments poured onto The Dallas Morning News' Web site, most of them singling out Powell for derision.

"The majority of the comments reflect my position," said Kunkle, "that at the point the officer was told that they were responding to a dying family member, that should have been his concern: to allow those people to get access to that family member."

Police officials have contacted the Moats family to apologize, asked that the ticket be dismissed, and posted a statement of remorse on the department's Web page.

Department officials say the now-infamous video will likely make its way into the police academy's training curriculum. GOOD MAKE AN EXAMPLE OUT OF HIM!

Kunkle said the internal investigation against Powell will focus on conduct reflecting poorly on the department, as well as making unwarranted threats of arrest.

Powell also faces investigation for comments he made to another officer after the incident ended – while the video camera was still rolling. He said he "worded" a report in such a way as to justify a January police chase.

"It appears, what he said, to have been contrary to our pursuit policy," Kunkle said, "to where he may have lied about the circumstances under which the pursuit began." (So the other night's behavior was not a random incident in Powell's file??) FIRE HIM!!!

The chief said any one of the charges could lead to dismissal.

You don't say?? DISH bets Powell is one of those cops that know the one! The ones that turn in their sirens and light to get through an intersection so they don't have to wait at the light? The ones that think they are above the law because they have a badge. Great job insuring more people will not trust cops to have their best interest at heart POWELL!



Lori Freese