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Fired Dallas 911 Operator Loses Appeal To Regain Job

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DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - The 911 operator who was fired last year after a Dallas woman was murdered has lost her fight to get her job back.

Angela Graham’s termination came after the death of Deanna Cook. Cook’s body was found several days after she dialed 911 for help, and the operator was then accused of mishandling the call.

Graham was the 911 operator who answered a call from Cook’s family on August 19. Graham did not dispatch police officers to the Cook home, even though the victim’s mother said that she could see water flowing from the house. Cook was later found dead inside of the home, in the bathtub.

Now, six months later, Graham said that she should have never been fired, because she was only doing her job as trained. The 911 operator told the family to check local jails and hospitals first in their search for Cook.

But police in Dallas said that Graham had been disciplined before, after previously failing to report a call about a police officer being assaulted, and for disconnecting a woman who was reporting an armed man outside of her home.

A civil service hearing was held Thursday at Dallas City Hall to address the issue. Graham was joined by members of an advocacy group called Justice Seekers.

The hearing found Graham violated her code of conduct.  The original penalty for the violation would have been three days off.  Chief David Brown was the one who decided to terminate her.  His decision was upheld Thursday evening after he testified in the case.

Graham, a 19-year veteran of the department, believed she was targeted because of a high-profile mistake by police.

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