A Brier (WA) Police Department officer says he was fired for responding to a shooting in nearby Mukilteo that left three teenagers dead and a fourth seriously injured. He says the city's police chief told him he shouldn't have left Brier unprotected to answer another city's call for help, reports KIRO.
Brier has a population of a little over 6,000 people; the police department is small enough to share a building with City Hall.
Former Officer Dan Anderson says it's unusual to respond to more than one call during a 10-hour shift, so he doesn't understand why coming to the aid of a neighboring department is cause for termination.
Anderson is a retired Washington state trooper with 25 years of law enforcement experience. After retiring from the patrol last December, Anderson took an overnight patrol position with the Brier Police Department. Eight months later he was fired by Chief Mike Catlett.
"When I asked him why he said it was because I left the city of Brier unprotected to respond to the Mukilteo shooting," Anderson explained to us.
Anderson says Mukilteo officers were on the radio, desperate for help. He says he was one of the first officers to arrive at the scene of the deadly shooting and he entered the house with two Mountlake Terrace officers.
"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."