Posted 6:17 PM 7/23/2012 : Tucson Police and Isabel Celis volunteers respond to fake 9-1-1 call
TUCSON - Tucson Police Sergeant, Chris Widmer, says the Sunday 911 call from a girl claiming to be Isabel Celis, put his department on high alert.
"When we receive a call like that we take it very seriously."
To investigate, TPD dispatched 25 on duty police officers, 3 detectives and 4 additional staff members.
The cost to the department totals roughly $4,700.00, which is ultimately billed to taxpayers.
"In a normal case, had this been a serious call, we don't worry about the cost. We want to do whatever we have to do to get the job done. In this case, being that it was a prank phone call, that is pretty expensive," Widmer added.
But money wasn't the only thing misspent. So was time. Officers who were scheduled to work on patrol were pulled to investigate this case, delaying other work that needed to be done.
"Citizens were waiting hours for their calls while we did this."
Volunteers, like Dan Smidt, working at the "Bring Isabelle Home" volunteer center, say Sunday's prank also takes an emotional toll.
"It's sad you know, we have a great team of volunteers who have been here from day one. Some of them had heat stress and heat stroke in the parking lot, and so you know it hurts when you get false alarms."
For now, the group is moving forward and trying not to let Sunday's prank derail their efforts.
This Friday night, they're holding a vigil at 7 p.m. It will be located at the Christian Faith Fellowship Church which is at 5601 Broadway Boulevard.
Check out the latest events FC Tucson has scheduled.
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