A Connecticut woman who received an incorrect pizza order from her local shop was so upset that she placed a distress call to 911, urging the operator to get the police involved.
“I just have a question,” the caller, from Hartford, says after the operator asks her to state her emergency. “If I order a pizza and they don’t want to give me my money back, can you guys do something?”
“Ma’am, that’s something you have to take up with them,” the operator tells her. “That’s not something you would dial 911 for. 911 is for life-threatening emergencies only.”
“Can you call the pizzeria or something?” the caller asks.
The operator, who remains remarkably calm and considerate throughout the call, asks the woman to explain the situation.
“I ordered a small pizza half cheese and half bacon,” the woman explains, “and they gave me half hamburger. So I called them back and they don’t want to give me my money back. They keep hanging [up] on me.”
“That’s not a police matter ma’am,” the woman is told. “You have to work that out with the pizza shop.”
If you think this is where the story ends, though, you’d be wrong. Perhaps it was a slow day for crime in Hartford, but the dispatcher actually offers to send an officer to the pizza shop to assess the situation.
Once there, the pizza shop explains to the police that the woman is only telling half the story. In fact, the unhappy pizza patron ate half the pizza before demanding her money back, plus another pizza. Here, the woman’s luck with the authorities runs out.
Police told the owners of Hartford’s Empire Pizza to forget the matter, and the woman did not get her money back, or an additional pizza. The woman, identified as Ashley, will not be charged with misuse of 911, according to Fox, but dispatchers would like to remind all potential callers that the number is only for emergencies.
“Many of the calls are life threatening but you can imagine how stressful it gets when we field a call that obviously isn’t and it's something is very minor,” said Clayton Northgraves, director of emergency services for the city of Hartford. “It does get very frustrating for the dispatchers but they do handle each call professionally.”
Last summer, a man in England called the police to report his girlfriend’s cat for eating his bacon.
“Sir, it’s not a criminal offense to let your cat eat your bacon,” the man was told, “and we don’t arrest cats.”