Print

News >> Browse Articles >> Law Enforcement News

-185

Cop Fired For Responding to Officer Down Call

Cop Fired For Responding to Officer Down Call

The Houston Chronicle via YellowBrix

June 08, 2011

HOUSTON, TX – Law enforcement leaders are stepping up criticism of Rice University’s firing of a police officer who responded to an armed standoff off-campus last month with a man who shot two HPD officers before turning the gun on himself.

Rice University terminated the officer, David Sedmak, for dereliction of duty for leaving his post to get to the call near the downtown Greyhound station. Sedmak responded to the scene when he heard the call on his police scanner.

“You don’t fire a guy for this unless he’s a chronic disciplinary problem,” said Kevin Lawrence, executive director of the Texas Municipal Police Association, at a news conference Monday. “You call him in, you counsel him and you put him back out there (to work). If he’s a good cop, he’s a good employee. You use this as a training opportunity.”

On May 7, the suspect, Jesse Brown, 20, was spotted with a pistol as he tried to buy a ticket at the Greyhound station at 2121 Main.

Brown shot Houston police officer Fernando Meza, who was working an off-duty job at the bus station and confronted Brown about the pistol. Meza was hit in the hand. Moments later, Brown also shot Houston police officer Timothy Moore in the leg outside a nearby McDonald’s. The two officers joined about 25 other police officials Monday in a show of support.

“In this case, Officer Sedmak’s reward was he was fired,” said Ray Hunt, vice president of the Houston Police Officers Union.

Hunt presented Sedmak with a $2,500 check Monday to help him as he tries to land another job.

Sedmak said he was astounded to learn he was being fired for helping fellow officers in distress.

Ds_max200w

Former Rice University police officer David Sedmak has drawn support from Houston police.

“My only concern on that day was to render aid to these two officers,” he said. "… Quite frankly, I couldn’t believe that after being in law enforcement for nearly 17 years that I was being relieved of my duty for running an assist to an officer.

“There’s been a lot of talk about me being a hero, and I just want to say personally that the real heroes here are these two officers and the job that they performed on that day,” said Sedmak, a former Galveston police officer.

University spokesman B.J. Almond declined to comment about Sedmak’s firing, but he provided a statement from the university.

“As a matter of policy, Rice University does not comment on personnel matters,” the statement reads. “However, out of respect for the Houston Police Department, we want to clarify that David Sedmak was terminated from the Rice University Police Department for dereliction of duty. Sedmak left his post when only two other officers were on duty and failed to notify his supervisor of his whereabouts for nearly an hour, which could have endangered the safety of our students and campus.”

Almond said that Rice University police officers frequently assist other law enforcement agencies near the university on a case-by-case basis. In the first five months of 2011, the department responded to 37 calls for help from adjacent police agencies.

“In all instances, Rice officers are required to promptly notify the RUPD dispatcher of their location and the situation … (to) ensure that enough officers are on duty on campus to protect the safety of our students and employees,” according to the statement.


-185
  • U

    WarPig

    about 3 years ago

    144 Comments

    Guess which University my kid isn't going to attend?

  • Gpd_max50

    amsgator

    about 3 years ago

    126 Comments

    I'm sensing a lawsuit

  • Don_27t_20tred_20on_20me_max50

    Riot

    about 3 years ago

    516 Comments

    Sounds like Rice University just wan'ts their officers to worry about Rice University...shamefull

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    sexyblkmama

    about 3 years ago

    8 Comments

    this is a outrage to fire a officers when others are being shot lets just hope nothing happen to university, and want some other cop to come. payback is hell

  • Evil_max50

    Scurge

    about 3 years ago

    1232 Comments

    Yet another prime example why there should a national law protecting LEO's from dipstick administrations from termination for stupid crap. There are way to many LEO's in this country working for little pay and at the whim of the spineless adminstration

  • Img_1099_max50

    Wolflie

    about 3 years ago

    6 Comments

    Something is seriously wrong with this department! No priorities.

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    redscropian

    about 3 years ago

    30 Comments

    I find that this whole thing is immature on the Rice department. As with most other officers, they will answer the call for an officer down. If the other officers or the department was involved with the other agencies in the community, they would have known about the officers in distress. This should have been handled in a more profession manner,not firing.If there were only 3 officers on duty at the university, that also inclines me to believe they didn't have enough officers on duty to begin with. Maybe that's what should be looked into, if it took them over an hour to even notice he went to help his fellow officers

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    Anonymous

    about 3 years ago

    This brings up to many emotiions and opens up to many avenues for comments. All I can say is that Officer Sedmack is a fine officer and I would be proud to work along side him. Goes to show a university does not mean intellegence, or commons sense, by no means.

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    Canival9885

    about 3 years ago

    380 Comments

    This sounds more like a disciplanary matter and should be at most, cost a few days or weeks of suspension, lost pay or vacation. But to fire him for assisting another officer will definitely warrant criticism against the department.

  • Wings_max50

    copper5817

    about 3 years ago

    892 Comments

    I wonder if Rice would want Houston PD to respond to assist for a shooting call on campus? I'll give you three guesses and the first two won't count...

  • Randy_edited_max50

    pawfarr

    about 3 years ago

    60 Comments

    I highly recommend David copy all of these comments and use them as his next resume. Find a job with a department that wants a man with such qualities as you have displayed and don't look back. Rice University has brought serious shame upon itself by lofting their "higher educated" noses at Texas law enforcement and LEOs across the nation. Based on their "logic"; Officer Sedmak could have done the same thing had he all of a sudden come down with a serious case of diarrhea!. P U R U!!

  • Wings_max50

    copper5817

    about 3 years ago

    892 Comments

    How about "good job!" instead of "your'e fired!" Officer Sedmack is better off without these fools. I hope somebody picks him up, otherwise all of this show of support is worth a hill of beans.

  • Steve_mcqueen_max50

    ilegworldchamp

    about 3 years ago

    8966 Comments

    "JOB WELL DONE OFFICER SEDMAK" .

  • Steve_mcqueen_max50

    ilegworldchamp

    about 3 years ago

    8966 Comments

    Some "LARD ASS CHAIR POLISHER" from the School has never had fat ass shot at and understand that time is "DEATH IN A SHOTS FIRED SITUATION". Protocol is "SEARCH AND DESTROY" and protect the injured when located. "ALL OFFICERS SHOULD PROTEST TO THE ALUMNI ASSOCIATION OVER THIS GRIEVOUS STUPID ACT OF REMOVAL RATHER THEN A PROMOTION AND A CITATION FOR A JOB WELL DONE".
    Hit the Administration right in the "POCKET BOOK" it's the only thing they understand. They can survive bad press and hard feelings , "BUT NOT THE LOSS OF MONEY".$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

  • Warn_a_brother_black_max50

    too40shorty

    about 3 years ago

    394 Comments

    I would be more concerned why the OTHER campus PO didn't respond to assist...

PoliceLink School Finder

Save time in your search for a criminal justice degree program. Use PoliceLink's School Finder to locate schools online and in your area.

Get Info

* In the event that we cannot find a program from one of our partner schools that matches your specific area of interest, we may show schools with similar or unrelated programs.

Recent Activity

Photo_user_blank_big
jamesbettis posted in: "It can Increase Your Endurance Level", about 2 hours ago.
Photo_user_blank_big
jamesbettis posted: "It can Increase Your Endurance Level", about 2 hours ago.
Photo_user_blank_big
jamesbettis posted: "It can increase your endurance level", about 2 hours ago.
Photo_user_blank_big
jamesbettis posted in: "It can increase your endurance level", about 2 hours ago.
Photo_user_blank_big
teriicross posted: "Boosts low testosterones", about 3 hours ago.