Calling 911? Ignorance Isn't an Emergency

From jilted fast food customers to cops that are high, 911 dispatchers across the country have taken their fair share of strange calls.

Not getting extra shrimp in your fried rice? Can't figure out how to get out of your car? High as a kite from pot-laced brownies? Looking to find the name of that really cute cop?

Dispatchers who handle 911 calls are trained to handle a lot of situations, but some of the calls they get are anything but emergencies. Life-and-death calls, sure, but the woman who calls to report her missing McNuggets? Not so much.

Every few months, however, audio gets released detailing trivial -- if not ridiculous -- calls to emergency officials.

"We deal with prank calls and people checking in for the time of day," Florida's St. Lucie County Public Safety 911 operations coordinator Tiffany Bennett told "When you pick up that phone, you never know what's on the other end."

Her center has also gotten calls asking about holiday parade routes and how to fix a washing machine.

"Of course, you are going to giggle at some of the sillier stuff," she said.

Shrimpless: Disaster at the Fast-Food Counter

Sometimes you just need that extra bit of protein. A Texas woman called 911 Monday upset that she did not receive the $1.62 worth of extra shrimp in her fried rice that she paid for.

"He didn't even put extra shrimp in there, and I asked him can you give me extra shrimp or can you give my money back," she told the 911 dispatcher. "And he just started hollering."

The dispatcher said she'd send an officer to the A & D Buffalo's in Haltom City, northeast of Fort Worth.

"To get a police officer out here, what has to happen?" the woman said, to which the dispatcher assured her that an officer was on the way.

But when police arrived, the woman had fled with her chopsticks.

Operating a Car: Not for Everyone

While technology has made lives easier for many, it helps sometimes to remember the days of yore, when not everything was achieved with the push of a button.

Such was the case when a Florida woman called 911 from a Walgreen's parking lot, telling the dispatcher that her car's electrical system was not working and she was trapped inside.

"I cannot open my door. I can't get the windows down. Nothing electrical works," the woman, who was not identified, told the Kissimmee dispatcher.

"And it's just getting very hot in here. And I'm not feeling well," she continued. "I need some help."

The dispatcher immediately asked if the caller has tried to pull up on the lock manually, noting that she should be able to unlock the car that way even if her car's electric system isn't working.

The woman can be heard trying to do so and, then, says, "OK, OK. I got that going. OK."

The woman then told the dispatcher she was going to try calling AAA for help with the car.

"I'm sorry," she said.

"That's OK," the dispatcher replied just before the call was disconnected.

Life or Death Gaming

Police responded to the home of an Athens, Ga., gamer last week after he called 911, frantic at the loss of his Playstation video game system.

Anthony White, 40, told the 911 operator that his cousin had stolen the system and that he was going to do whatever it took to get it back.

"I wanna go over and get my Playstation," White can be heard saying on the call, insisting that it was an emergency even after the operator informed him otherwise.

"Anthony, that's not an emergency. Hold on a minute," the operator says, to which Anthony replies, "Yeah, it is." When the operator explains the meaning of emergency, White shoots back, "I'm gonna kill the son of a b----. How about that?"

ABC affiliate WAAY reported that when police showed up at White's home, he told them he had a gun and requested they shoot him. After then threatening to shoot police, White was arrested on charges of making terroristic threats, which is a felony. He has bonded out of jail.

He could not be reached for comment.

The Cop vs. the Pot Brownies

It seems the brownies prevailed. Former Dearborn, Mich., Police Cpl. Edward Sanchez resigned from his post after calling 911 in April 2006 to report that the marijuana-laced brownies he and his wife had eaten were making them sick.

"I think we're dying," he said. "I think we're dead. I really do."

"Time is going by really, really, really, really slow," he added later.

Sanchez was on the phone with the dispatcher for about five minutes, convinced he and his wife were overdosing, but also asking for things like the time. He told the dispatcher they used a "quarter-ounce" of marijuana, but was not prosecuted.

A police commander at the department declined to tell local media last year why Sanchez was not prosecuted, according to The Associated Press, saying that he'd resigned as part of an internal investigation.

His wife, Stacey Sanchez, declined to comment. Sanchez could not be reached for comment.

Frantic 911 Call: 'My McNuggets Are an Emergency'

Bennett's dispatchers took three 911 calls last week from a Fort Pierce woman who complained that McDonald's refused to give her a refund when they ran out of McNuggets.

Letreasa Goodman, 27, paid for her order but became irate when she was offered different food after being told the restaurant was out of McNuggets, according to a police report obtained by

"This is an emergency. If I would have known they didn't have McNuggets, I wouldn't have given my money," Goodman told Fort Pierce Police Officer Joshua Buday, who responded to the call, according to the report.

The report says the cashier offered to give Goodman another order -- more food for the same price -- but she refused and began yelling at the cashier before storming outside to call 911.

"Now she wants to give me a McDouble, but I don't want one," Goodman told the officer, according to the report.

Goodman was charged with misuse of a wireless 911 system.

She later told WPEC-TV that she called 911 because she didn't want the situation to get out of control.

"I wanted to jump across that counter but I understand it's not her fault, she's just doing her job," Goodman said. "She wouldn't give me my money back. That's why I was a young lady and called the police."

A spokesman for the St. Lucie Sheriff's Office, which released Goodman on a notice to appear in court, said she has been booked into the county jail nine times on various charges, ranging from making a false police report to petty theft.

'The Cutest Cop I've Seen'

They say love comes knocking when you least expect it. Lorna Dudash thought that day had come for her back in June 2006 when a good-looking sheriff's deputy showed up at her door in Washington County, Ore., responding to a neighbor's noise complaint.

Dudash, then 45, called 911 after he left, asking for his name and wanting know if he could please come back, saying he was "the cutest cop I've seen in God knows how long."

"I know it's not an emergency but heck, it doesn't happen very often, a good-looking man comes at your door step," she told the 911 dispatcher.

The deputy did come back -- to arrest her.

She was charged with making a false 911 call. Dudash pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 2 years probation and 100 hours of community service, according to ABC affiliate KATU.

Emergency Traffic Report?

A famous name turned up in a 911 call from October 2008. In the weeks leading up to his brother's failed presidential bid, Joe McCain allegedly called 911 near Alexandria, Va., wanting to know why traffic was stopped on his side of Interstate 95 and not the opposite direction, as heard on the audio recording.

When he hung up, the 911 officer called the number back and got a voicemail message saying it belonged to Joe McCain and that he hoped Sen. John McCain would be elected on Nov. 4. Joe McCain then allegedly called 911 back, upset about the message left by the operator stating that abusing 911 could be a criminal matter.

"Someone gave me this riot act about the violation of police," McCain can be heard saying on the second call..

"911 is used for emergencies, only not just because you're sitting in traffic," the officer replied.

Joe McCain could not be reached for comment.

Lemonade Emergency

Jean Fortune, 66, was charged with misuse of 911 communications after placing a Feb. 7 call when a Boynton Beach, Fla., Burger King ran out of lemonade.

Talking to the dispatcher from his car outside the drive-thru window, Fortune said he ordered a complete meal, but was only told about the lemonade shortage when he pulled forward to pay.

Then he complained that he was told his food would take 15 minutes to finish.

"If the food's not done, sir, the food's not done, " the dispatcher told him.

But when he protested, telling her that he came from work and that he was hungry, the dispatcher becomes noticeably frustrated with the call, which lasted for about 5 minutes.

"Customer service is not a reason to call 911," she told Fortune. "911 is if you're dying."

When Fortune told her no money or food had exchanged hands, she advised him to simply drive away. But he persisted and told the dispatcher that he pulled into the parking lot to wait for police.

Sandwich Mistake Leads to Arrest

A Florida man got more than he asked for when he called 911 -- twice -- in August to complain that a Jacksonville Subway sandwich shop didn't properly prepare his order, two sandwiches with everything.

"I got a situation over here at Subway," Reginald Peterson said on the recording. "I'm not going to sit here and pay $12 for $10 freaking sandwiches and don't get what I paid for."

The sandwiches, at his request, went into the trash.

Local media later reported that he pleaded no contest to the charges and was fined $283 and sentenced to time served, which was one day in jail.