Six 911 employees suspended following death of Trevyan Rowe

    A photo of 14-year-old Trevyan Rowe on stage at the Blue Cross Arena Monday night during a vigil. (WHAM photo)

    Rochester, N.Y. (WHAM) - Six employees with the City of Rochester 911 Center are on administrative leave as a result of "adult failures" with the Trevyan Rowe investigation, Mayor Lovely Warren said Tuesday.

    Rochester Police and the City of Rochester discussed elements of the investigation pertaining to the city and police department at a news conference Tuesday afternoon.

    “One thing I am more certain of today is that, had it not been for adult failures, Trevyan Rowe may still be with us,” Mayor Warren said.

    Warren added that they extended the opportunity for the district to combine news conferences, but the district refused to do so.

    Rochester Police Chief Michael Ciminelli clarified that the department was not notified about Trevyan being declared missing until 5:15 p.m. Thursday.

    “There are 911 recordings where bystanders reported someone on the bridge," Warren said. "While the 911 center dispatched a state trooper, it is also our protocol that, when someone is in distress on a bridge above water, to dispatch fire rescue and notify the scuba team. This did not happen. And you know what? You know what? We have to own it.”

    Fire officials say help would have gotten there within minutes.

    "I know our firefighters would have done everything they could, this is what they do- day in and day out," said RFD Chief John Screiber. "Normally if we are on scene in seconds- we can deploy something- and someone can be rescued."

    Trevyan, a 14-year-old boy with autism, was last seen Thursday morning after getting off the bus at School No. 12 in Rochester. Trevyan never went inside the school, however, and reported declared missing approximately 10 hours later.

    "The whole thing is very frustrating, and extremely unfortunate," said Stacey Zoccoli, one of the several callers who say they phoned 911 Thursday morning when they saw someone walking unsafely on the Frederick Douglass-Susan B. Anthony Memorial Bridge. "And unfortunate is an understatement, but that's just a lack of not knowing what else to say."

    She wishes the proper help would have gotten to that person, who police believe was Trevyan Rowe. She just hopes now that something changes so it doesn't happen again.

    "I just want to see something good come out of something bad. It can't just happen and have nothing change from it," said Zoccoli.

    A massive volunteer search effort was launched over the next three days to find Trevyan alive. But on Sunday afternoon, divers with the Rochester Police SCUBA team recovered a body that was later determined to be his.

    More than 1,500 people turned out at a vigil Monday night to mourn his death and celebrate his life with his family.

    At the news conference Tuesday, Mayor Warren said the city has created new mandatory in-service training on this aspect of 911 dispatching. The training aims to make sure all personnel at 911 will receive information on fire dispatch in these circumstances. The training began Tuesday and will be completed within the next two weeks.

    Warren confirmed Tuesday that the family of Trevyan Rowe has retained a legal attorney.


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