CHARLOTTE COUNTY, Fla. - The sister of a woman, who was kidnapped and killed six years ago, is talking only to WINK News about the 911 system.
Amanda Goff's family believes had things been handled differently with a 911 call, Denise Amber Lee would still be alive. Lee's case has changed the 911 system in the state of Florida.
Now, dispatchers have to go through extensive training before getting on the other end of a call.
"My friends that work in dispatch have told me that they tell them my sister's story when they're going through the training," Goff says.
Twenty-four-year-old Amanda Goff still remembers the night her sister, Denise Amber Lee, was killed in 2008. The 21-year-old mother and wife was at her North Port home when Michael King kidnapped, raped and murdered her.
"It's still difficult to think about and talk about," Goff adds.
But despite the pain, Amanda and her family have been anything but silent. They say had dispatchers correctly handled a witness' 911 call that night, their loved one would still be alive. An investigation showed, they never alerted deputies to that call.
Now, Amanda, a Longboat Key Police Department dispatcher, has just completed the rigorous mandatory training her family has been pushing for.
"It's shocking that they've never had mandatory state standard training for dispatchers before because they're the first responders," Goff adds.
"In the state of Florida, before this happened, a nail tech had to be certified, a hair dresser had to be certified, everyone had to be certified but come to find out the people you're calling who are the first line of defense aren't certified," says Sgt. Rick Goff.
Amanda and her father, Charlotte County Sheriff's Office Sgt Rick Goff tell WINK News, dispatchers are now required to get more than 230 hours of training with an already certified dispatcher. They also have to take a mandatory test in Tallahassee
It's in addition to time spent listening to both ends of a 911 call and practicing how to respond. They also have to get re-certified every few years.
"You see all the flaws that do go on with the 911 system so it's so important to get these laws passed," Amanda Goff adds.
"If you can save one life then Denise's deaths not in vain," says Sgt. Goff.