Shows like 9-1-1, Nightwatch, and Rescue Me give fans an in-depth look at the lives of first responders and the sensitive situations that they find themselves in every day. Much like firefighters and police officers, 911 responders play a major role in keeping our communities safe. Although 911 dispatchers are the backbone of the emergency responders unit, over the last few years, they’ve gotten a pretty bad rap.
Recently, NFL player Richard Sherman’s wife made headlines after calling 911 for help. Instead, she was met with a short temper from a dispatcher who has since come under fire on social media. And in 2015, the court of public opinion determined that Albuquerque Fire Department veteran Matthew Sanchez was guilty of not fulfilling his duties on the night that Jaydon Chavez-Silver was murdered.
Jaydon’s story was featured on an episode of MTV’s True Life Crime. Here’s what we know about the case.
Jaydon Chavez-Silver was shot and killed by Esias Madrid in 2015.
On June 25, 2015, in Albuquerque, 17-year-old Esperanza Quintero called 911 to request help for her friend, who we now know is Jaydon Chavez-Silver. Jaydon, also 17, had been shot in a drive-by shooting. During the call, Albuquerque Fire Department dispatcher Matthew Sanchez continued to ask if Jaydon was still breathing, at which point Esperanza became frustrated and swore at him.
Matthew told Esperanza that she could "deal with it [herself]" and hung up the phone.
Although Matthew still dispatched help, many believe that the first responder’s negligence may have caused Jaydon’s subsequent death. In a previous interview with the Associated Press, Esperanza opened up about the emotional phone call.
“I don’t understand how much more I could have stayed calm,” she explained. “It was upsetting at the time but I didn’t have a choice. What more could I have done?”
Later, Jaydon’s family sued the city and settled for $50,000 in court, and today, Jaydon’s mother Nicole is still fighting for crime reform in honor of her son. But what happened to the 911 dispatcher who answered the call? Where is Matthew Sanchez now?
Where is Matthew Sanchez now?
After his resignation, Matthew accepted a job about a year later at the Bernalillo Fire Department, but it wasn’t long before he was fired. Matthew received news of his termination only days after he was hired, leading him to later sue the city for wrongful termination.
“I reached out to the county manager and public safety director and expressed my concerns over the hire. At no time did I ever direct an outcome,” Commissioner Wayne Johnson previously said in a statement, per KRQE.
In 2018, KRQE reported that the Bernalillo Fire Department agreed to pay out a settlement of $25,000. Since then, it seems that Matthew Sanchez has been pretty under the radar, as he has virtually no digital footprint.