A jury sided with a former West Covina deputy fire marshal last week in his whistleblower-retaliation lawsuit against the city.
Jason Briley had worked for the West Covina Fire Department for nine years when he was fired in September 2015. The city claimed Briley had been fired for improper conduct and being difficult to work with, but he alleged the move was retaliation for him pointing out various city facilities — including City Hall, the Cortez Park Community & Senior Center and the Cameron Park Community Center — did not have proper fire alarm systems.
Briley filed his lawsuit in January 2016, and on Wednesday, a jury awarded him a little more than $4 million.
“My first reaction was that I was vindicated,” Briley said in a phone interview. “I didn’t do anything wrong and wasn’t a horrible person.”
San Gabriel Valley Tribune
Thomas Scheuerman wants to vote Tuesday. He'd really, really like to cast a ballot.
To do so, he's planning on having a colleague cover part of his shift while Scheuerman votes at 7 a.m., right when the polls open, before rushing to work.
"If he says no … I'm kind of stuck," Scheuerman said. "If there's a situation and someone says no — has child-care issues or something — I'm stuck, I won't vote this year."
Scheuerman, 29, is an emergency medical technician with the Philadelphia Fire Department, driving an ambulance around the city in response to 911 calls. He's not exactly free to take a break to vote in the middle of a 12-hour shift, and he lives across the city from where he's stationed. Scheuerman and most of his 500 or so fellow first responders working Election Day in the city also aren't eligible for absentee ballots, which are limited to very specific circumstances by Pennsylvania law; early in-person voting is not allowed in the state.
Columbus will pay $410,000 to the family of a woman who was killed in a crash with a fire truck on the Southeast Side in 2013 as part of a settlement in a wrongful-death lawsuit.
The Columbus City Council voted Monday to settle the lawsuit brought by William R. Glenn, whose mother, Elvyra T. Glenn, 86, died a week after a crash between her vehicle and a Columbus Division of Fire engine at the intersection of Brice and Refugee roads on Nov. 12, 2013.
The 10th District Court of Appeals ruled that Columbus had immunity in the lawsuit but that it did not fully extend to Paul Sheridan, the firefighter who was driving the truck.
“In this case, it came down to whether the employee operated Engine 32 in a reckless manner,” said Josh Cox, chief counsel in the Columbus city attorney’s office.
Sheridan was working out of Station 32, 3675 Gender Road, when he was dispatched as a driver to 5400 Sedalia Drive. He swore in an affidavit that he activated an electronic siren before leaving the station but did not activate a mechanical siren during the response.
After receiving at least three letters with complaints and meeting with the local firefighters association, the Augusta Fire Department wants to set the record straight about claims made against it.
Michael Meyers, the department’s public information officer, said the majority of the allegations made by Augusta Professional Firefighters Association Local 3357 President Charlie Coleman in a series of letters since Sept. 21 were not true. An additional letter was sent by the International Association of Fire Fighters to the city stating that the city was attempting to suppress the organization’s voice.
Coleman said last week that he met with Augusta Fire Chief Chris James on Oct. 19 but that the meeting didn’t go well. Meyers said Monday the meeting actually went well.
Five people were arrested in London on Monday after a video posted on social media showed a group burning an effigy of Grenfell Tower, the public housing block where 72 people died in a massive blaze in 2017.
In a statement, London's Metropolitan Police said five men, ages 19 to 55, were being held on suspicion of a public order offense after they turned themselves in to a south London police station.
The men were not identified and additional details were not immediately available. In the video, several people appear to be gathered around a model of the tower. After it's set alight, the group can be heard chuckling and cracking jokes.