911 Call From Brittany Zimmerman Not Responded To By Dane County


Tragic.  No other words come to mind.

The news as reported by the Isthmus is numbing.   There will need to be serious answers given to the public about this matter.  And soon.   Joe Norwick, director of the Dane County 911 Center, has lots to explain!  Not only what happened the day Zimmerman called and later was murdered, but also why the delay in responding to questions about this matter, and trying to dodge his responsibilities to own up to the massive and grave error at the 911 center.

Madison police believe Brittany Zimmermann called 911 before she was stabbed and beaten to death inside her Doty Street apartment, but the 911 Center failed to send help after erroneously concluding the call was a mistake.

The 21-year-old UW-Madison student’s body, with multiple stab wounds to the chest and blunt force trauma to the head, was discovered at 1:08 p.m. on April 2 by Zimmermann’s fiancé. The scene was such a mess that he initially believed Zimmermann had been shot.

Zimmermann’s murder is the fifth unsolved Madison homicide in the past 10 months. Two have occurred downtown, inside homes, during the day, apparently by strangers.

Four weeks after Zimmermann was murdered, her killer or killers remain at large, and little is known about the investigation. But Isthmus has been able to confirm several new details.

The most significant is that the 911 Center received a call from Zimmermann before she was killed, did not dispatch police, and then did not immediately or accurately inform the Police Department about the call after cops found her body, law enforcement officials tell Isthmus.

Sources suggest the center may have made a call-back to a wrong number, where the person who answered assured that no crisis was occurring. One source says cops might have been better situated to make a quick arrest had mistakes not been made by the 911 Center.

Over the past two and a half weeks, the 911 Center has refused requests for basic information about the calls. This week, Joe Norwick, director of the Dane County 911 Center since July, declined further opportunities to comment after being provided with a written summary of parts of this story.

In an email, Norwick said he was basing his refusal on a request from the Madison Police Department to withhold all information “pertaining to this matter” because release would “seriously impair” the murder investigation.

Madison police officials vigorously dispute this. While declining to call the 911 Center’s action a cover-up, they suggested that Norwick is improperly using the department as an excuse not to own up to his agency’s mistakes.

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17 thoughts on “911 Call From Brittany Zimmerman Not Responded To By Dane County

  1. I believe it.

    Some time back, a knock on my door by a young, intelligent Army (Ranger I think) troop on leave asked me to call the 911 because he thought a girl was in trouble. She was, a guy was beating on her and she was bleeding. The Army guy said he would handle the situation himself but it was against the law (he was trained in some bad hand-to-hand stuff, he explained).

    I let the 911 idiot have it over the phone for not dispatching a unit after my brief description on the situation. ‘Get off your ass and help this girl,’ I said in so many words.

    The 911 idiot said she, “did not like my attitude.”

    Does Joe Norwick screen his people for stupidity?
    Norwick has one hell of a lot of explaining to do, and someone should lose his/her job over this.

  2. Pingback: Developing, huge story: Houston, we’ve got a problem in Dane County. An I-Badger speaks out «

  3. mysticgypsy128

    wasn’t there another girl that this happened to not too long ago? a twenty-one year old mother, she called while being kidnapped, several other people called when they saw her being kidnapped, and yet no one responded, and she was murdered. this is ridiculous. people shouldn’t be scared to call 911 for fear that they’re call won’t be taken seriously – it’s supposed to be a lifeline in an emergency.

  4. Avion

    Calling back the number is no excuse, if a dangerous situation and someone else answers the phone, they could cover it up. So they should have dispatched Police to the sitation.

  5. The guy just made a comment not an ad. WTF

    Noble Wray should go to Prison. My God a young life was lost and he failed at covering it up. Yeah he covered it up to protect the evidence (BULLSHIT). We have a corrupt police department. Hitler would love the Madison Police department!

  6. The facts in no way support the last comment here. Anyone who knows Madison, and the police department, understands that Noble Wray is an honorable cop, and leader in the department. There is no justification for the last comment.

  7. dv

    At the end of every article that week, police called for any strange behavior that may have been connected to the incident. The day of the incident, I was walking down state around 11:55/12 and was nearly knocked over by an EXTREMELY creepy man that was sprinting down state. I noted the incident to the person I was speaking to on the phone at the time.

    AFter the news was released, I phoned the Police Dept. Hotline to give them the information. REGARDLESS of whether it was relevant or not, the officer with whom I spoke did NOT EVEN ASK WHAT THE MAN LOOKED LIKE. Two times before that, I got no response at all.

    Now, if the police department can dispatch 100 cops to Mifflin, arresting people for putting a toe on the sidewalk with a beer in hand, I think they should be able to respond to an EMERGENCY PHONE CALL BY A GIRL that is about to be MURDERED, and maybe even respond to information provided by a Madison civilian.

  8. The police were not informed by 911 to respond to the situation. The police are not the bad folks…..period.

    Lets keep the facts lined up. This is a very emotional event, and yet the facts are important to understand. The 911 call center is the place where the breakdown took place with public safety.

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