An Ohio police dispatcher received an unusual call last week. The woman on the other end of the line said she wanted to order a pizza, but she was actually reporting domestic violence taking place against her mother.
"I would like to order a pizza," the caller said, proceeding to give the address to her apartment.
"You called 911 to order a pizza?" police dispatcher Tim Teneyck questioned. "This is the wrong number to order a pizza."
"No, no, no, no ... you're not understanding," the caller insisted.
When it clicked, Teneyck was quick to interject: "I'm getting you now ... the guy still there?"
"Yeah, I need a large pizza," the caller said. "Pepperoni."
"I'll get 'em going," Teneyck assured her.
Teneyck then calmly asked her if medical assistance was needed and if the caller was able to stay on the line. She responded, "no" to both and Teneyck hung up, once again assuring her that police were on their way.
Teneyck then had the wherewithal to instruct officers to turn off their sirens upon arriving at the apartment.
"[The] caller ordered a pizza and agreed with everything I said that there's a domestic violence going on," he told them.
"Excellent dispatch work on the part of our dispatcher. Some dispatchers may have hung up," said Oregon Chief of Police Michael Navarre.
When police arrived they made the arrest
The caller was the 38-year-old daughter of a 57-year-old woman, whose boyfriend came home drunk on Nov. 13, telling the 57-year-old that he was "going to beat her ass" before punching and pushing her, witness said in a police report, according to NBC News.
Her boyfriend, Simon Ray Lopez, 56, has been arrested and is being detained at the Lucas County Corrections Center on a domestic violence charge.
Police Chief Navarre praised Teneyck, saying, "he utilized his training and his experience to recognize that a woman was in distress," Navarre told NBC News. "We have no way of knowing what would have happened if she didn't get through."
Navarre and Teneyck say they had never heard of the method of pretending to order a pizza to discreetly alert police, but Navarre plans to use audio of the call to train future dispatchers.
It should be noted that the method is not standard practice, and not all dispatchers are trained to respond.
Though the victim in this case is undoubtedly grateful that her daughter had the thoughtfulness to utilize it and that Teneyck's intuition kicked in.