MetroSafe dispatch outlines 911 calls they received during Old National Bank shooting

MetroSafe call-takers and dispatchers outline the day of the Old National Bank Shooting and the calls that came in.
Published: Apr. 14, 2023 at 6:45 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - While police and paramedics were the first on the scene during the shooting at Old National Bank, the dispatchers were the ones who had to sift through the chaos and get them where they needed to go.

Now, we’re able to head how they were able to handle the terrifying moments.

Day in and day out dispatch take on traumatic calls and Monday was no different.

However, when you’re taking a call from someone hiding for their life, it all comes down to one thing, training.

For most, the shaky voices and cries for help on Monday’s 911 calls would break them but for those on the call at dispatch, it’s a day in the life.

“Lots of training. Lots of practice. Lots of deep breathing,” MetroSafe Call-Taker Dana Frost said.

Her extensive training included five weeks in an academy and more than six months of one on one training.

It gave the three-year vet the experience that proved valuable for her to stay in the moment when a woman called hiding from the shooter in a closet.

“I had no emotion. I was focused on her,” Frost said. “I was focused on the phone I was on the phone with making sure she was okay and making sure she stayed calm and stayed quiet. Tried to get her the help that she needed as quickly as possible.”

The process that takes a team effort.

That’s why six-year dispatcher Josh Cothern came in on his day off to help with the chaos.

“I knew that my coworkers were going to need help and if anything, you know, needed support even if I was just here for them to be here,” Cothern shared.

While everyday at MetroSafe is different, Monday’s mass shooting is one they will never forget.

“It’s scary,” Cothern said. “I mean even for somebody that has the experience that we have in here, it’s a terrifying ordeal to know that people are having to go through that.”

“No absolutely not. I will never forget her name. I will never forget her voice,” Frost shared.

Frost said she does feel a responsibility to keep her callers safe, but the only way she can do that is by getting all the information she needs to ensure everyone leaves any situation safely.

“I get a little overwhelmed sometimes because I feel like I’m repeating myself over and over again and I don’t have a different answer but I’m okay,” Frost said. “I’m okay because I know she’s okay.”

Frost has such a calmness about her that seems very comforting. So when asked how she copes with such a high intensity job, she said she comes from a first responder family so she talks to them to help ease her mind.

Frost said that to her knowledge, she has never met any of her callers in person, but if she were to meet the woman from Monday, she said she would give her a big hug because her call is something she will never forget.