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Wednesday, October 2, 2013

9 firefighters accused of vandalizing Milwaukee firehouse, chief says
How weird is this? Story thanks to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Link provided below:
The nine Milwaukee firefighters placed on administrative suspension this week are accused of vandalizing Engine House 32, where they were stationed, Milwaukee's fire chief said Wednesday.
Chief Mark Rohlfing, in expanding on his Tuesday announcement of the suspensions, declined to give specifics of the vandalism, adding that early media reports of the allegations' details might not be true.
The nine firefighters have been suspended with pay as the department investigates the vandalism and other inappropriate conduct allegations.
The engine house is in the 1500 block of N. 30th St. The vandalism apparently took place Saturday evening and was discovered at 8 a.m. Sunday, when the nine firefighters' shifts ended. Most members of the engine house were being transferred to other locations, and that was their last shift together, Rohlfing said.
"We transfer people all the time, but usually we don't transfer most of the people at one engine house in one shot," the chief said. "We decided this engine house needed some fresh faces."
The nine firefighters were suspended Monday. Their shifts are being covered with additional staffing.
"When we look at what went on there, and I think I speak for myself and the department, it's upsetting and disappointing," Rohlfing said. "Our core value is integrity, and we hold them to a pretty high standard."
Assistant Chief Gerard Washington will lead the investigation, and the Milwaukee city attorney's office will assist as needed. The department is still gathering written statements, which is one reason Rohlfing said he did not want to disclose details of the allegations.
Milwaukee Fire and Police Commission Executive Director Michael Tobin said Tuesday night that the commission had been notified of the suspensions and will assist in the investigation. Mayor Tom Barrett also was notified and supports a complete investigation, a spokesman said Tuesday.
"It's in our interest as much as anybody's to find out the truth and hold those members accountable," Rohlfing said.

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