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Salt Lake officer who arrested nurse would like to apologize

Salt Lake officer who arrested nurse would like to apologize says attorney (Photo: SLCPD)

(KUTV) The Salt Lake City Police officer at the center of controversy over the arrest of a University of Utah nurse would like to apologize, according to his attorney who spoke with 2News.

"Jeff would love the chance to sit down and apologize for what happened here," said attorney Greg Skordas about his client, Detective Jeff Payne. "If he could do this over he would do it over differently."

Skordas said he's not making any excuses for his client.

"There is no question that Jeff made a mistake," said Skordas. "I can understand the public being upset this was a troubling event."

But he said there is more to this story than meets the eye.

"There is the side of this that Jeff would like to tell at some point and I think that will happen," Skordas said.

It started in July with a fiery crash in Cache County, involving a head on collision with a semi truck during a police chase. The driver of the semi was taken to the University of Utah burn unit. Skordas said Payne was asked by Logan police to get a blood sample from the driver as part of a law that requires commercial drivers to give blood samples if they've been involved in an accident.

"[Payne] believed at the time he was following a direct order," Skordas said.

Nurse Alex Wubbels refused to allow Payne to get a blood sample because he didn't have a warrant, and did not have permission from the patient.

That's when Payne took matters into his own hands and arrested Wubbels.

"I think he would love the chance to talk to people about what happened and why it happened and how he would do it differently," Skordas said.

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