Yvan Fernandez, a Lee County deputy who has been accused of going to lunch instead of responding to a 911 call for help, is now out of a job. Last month, WZVN broke the story that the sheriff had launched an internal affairs investigation into the incident. WZVN reported this week that it had gotten a hold of the report, which “lays out what happened on the day Gwen Minnis died.”
According to WZVN, investigators said that Minnis, 47, called 911. Raw Story said the report “states that Fernandez was having lunch with three other deputies at Raider’s Pizza and Wings when he first took the call, responding to a second call from dispatch 8 minutes later, telling the dispatcher ‘copy.’” By the time help arrived, more than 50 minutes later, Minnis was found lying in the grass.
WZVN said it spoke with Lee County Sheriff Mike Scott about the internal affairs investigation and with Minnis’ family and friends. Scott said that Deputy Fernandez’s actions were beyond negligent.
Minnis’s family friends said that Gwendolyn Minnis of Lehigh Acres “had just been released from the hospital last March after suffering a heart attack.” She was reportedly at a friend’s house in Fort Myers “when they think she suffered another heart attack. Somehow she managed to call 911.”
Police believe that Minnis called 911 in order to report another heart attack on March 13th, “with dispatch sending out a call for an officer to respond after the line went dead.”
Cykecia Russ, a family friend, said, that Minnis was the kind of person who “would help somebody if they needed help.” Unfortunately, when Minnis herself “needed help the most, it took deputies more than 50 minutes to respond.”
According to an internal report release on Wednesday, Lee County Deputy Yvan Fernandez was first dispatched to Minnis’ friend’s home at 1:11 p.m. on March 13th after the county received a 911 call with no voice on the other end.
The report says Fernandez was having lunch with three other deputies at a pizza and wings restaurant at the time, and did acknowledge the call.
Eight minutes later, dispatch contacted Fernandez again saying the call was still open. Fernandez replied by saying “copy.”
Fernandez neglected to tell another deputy to go out to the home on Dryden Circle for approximately thirty minutes. WZVN said the other “deputy didn’t arrived until 2:04 p.m. – exactly 53 minutes later.” Fernandez reportedly did not arrive on the scene until 2:21 pm.
Russ told WZVN that it was “just kind of sad and upsetting when you call for help and the person who says they’re going to come help, and they actually don’t.” She said that “Minnis’s body was next to the front door the whole time.” Minnis was found dead in the front yard of a friend’s Dryden Circle home near Luckett Road and Ortiz Avenue clutching a cell phone in one hand and medication in the other.
Lee County deputy fired for not responding to 911 to eat lunch