Do you want to sell a rig? Click HERE to find out how with SellFireTrucks.com.
The New York Post’s Susan Edelman and Candice M. Giove, the same reporters who broke the FDNY EMS social media scandal stories, are again focusing on FDNY. But this time they are looking at FDNY “wannabes” in an article titled “Culture of FDNY groupies rages out of control as ‘badge bunny’ obsession turns scary”. Women who want to date New York City’s bravest and men who apparently want to be firefighters so badly that they become obsessed.
Sunday’s article focuses on 34-year-old Christine Cuocolo, an IRS employee, and two men she associated with who are fire buffs, Gary Battista and Scott Main. It’s a detailed article that shows a really dark side that resulted in pictures of firefighters wives and children being posted online, threats of physical harm to specific firefighters and even threats to blow up a firehouse.
Here’s an excerpt to get you started, but make sure you read the whole article:
Some buffs listen to scanners and chase sirens, taking spectacular action shots of blazes to display as trophies. “You guys are sooo awesome,” a female fan recently cooed on one page.
Cuocolo, who showed off a scanner, crafted YouTube videos and slide shows lovingly depicting her favorite engine companies.
She brought plates of cookies to firehouses to “show support because I respect them,” Cuocolo told The Post.
She also confessed to crushes on firefighters at Engine 65 on 43rd Street off Sixth Avenue — and a desire to date them.
But Cuocolo popped by so often — she also brought flowers and memorial plaques for the fallen — the crews grew uneasy. FDNY rules permit visitors inside firehouses only during “open houses”; they can’t just hang out.
When the firefighters finally told Cuocolo to stop the surprise visits and Facebook postings, her adoration twisted into obsession and fury, fellow buffs and firefighters said.
Cuocolo, the daughter of an ex-NYPD cop-turned-private investigator, dug up information on some firefighters and posted photos of their wives and children. At least one firefighter demanded she remove them.
Three separate violent incidents are being investigated at different area fire stations: Station 18 on Lewis, Station 6 on Starr, and Station 9 on South.
The latest incident happened Thursday outside Fire Station 18 on Lewis Avenue. WTOL 11 has been told a makeshift exploding device was placed in front of one of the bay doors, involving a bag of charcoal and a propane tank.
Firefighters found the device and called the police bomb squad to remove it from harm's way.
On Wednesday between 2:30 and 3 p.m. shots were fired at Station 9, 300 South Avenue.
Dan Desmond, vice president of Toledo Firefighters Local 92, said five shots were fired at the building, where he was on duty.
That incident was followed by a series of shots fired at the outside of Station 6 at 642 Starr Avenue in East Toledo at 4:30 p.m. that left a bullet hole in the glass garage door but missed the five firefighters inside.
Mr. Desmond said the three incidents have puzzled him, and he declined to speculate if they have anything to do with the contentious State Issue 2 or with the city’s recent announcement that the administration is cracking down on alleged abuse of sick time in the fire department.
Two firefighters fired over Virginia noose incident. Loudoun County Fire-Rescue dismissed the firefighters today.16 comments
Above is our December 14 story on the noose being left in a firefighter’s vehicle. You can read the original story here.
Sources tell STATter911.com two Loudoun County firefighters were fired today almost four weeks after a noose was found inside the car of a black firefighter. The two firefighters had been on suspension with pay since the December 4 incident at Station 5 in Hamilton.
Sources familiar with the incident indicate the career firefighters, both white, thought it was a harmless prank when they put the noose inside the vehicle of a firefighter who worked on the same shift. That vehicle was parked in the lot of the fire station.
According to the sources, who are not authorized to speak officially for the department on this matter, the firefighter who was the victim, while angry, did not immediately complain about the noose. When the lieutenant who supervised the crew became aware of what happened he reported it to his superiors.
We have contacted officials with the Loudoun County Department of Fire, Rescue & Emergency Management for comment, but they have not yet responded. When STATter911.com first reported the incident on December 14, Chief Joseph Pozzo confirmed it had occurred and was being investigated. Chief Pozzo wrote in an email, “When the Department learned of the allegation we took immediate action”.
One of the firefighters terminated had just finished his probationary period in November.
On December 6, two days after first dealing with the noose incident, Chief Pozzo was faced with another serious incident involving a career firefighter. In that case, a phone call to Station 6 in Ashburn was perceived as a bomb threat. The call was traced to Station 2 in Purcellville. The firefighter being investigated for the threat is still on suspension with pay and has not been told what punishment he will face, if any.
Baltimore County house fire: I was in the Chestnut Ridge area Sunday, but a little too early in the day to take in this fire on Nancy Lee Court (it would have also been bad form to leave my parent’s 60th anniversary party). Michael “FirePix1075″ Schwartzberg was there and took this video. You can click here to see Michael’s still images and read his account.
Pranks put three jobs in jeopardy: STATter911.com learned yesterday that three career firefighters in Loudoun County, Virginia are suspended as internal and criminal investigations continue into two unrelated incidents that apparently were meant as pranks. In the first, on December 4, officials confirm there are allegations that two white firefighters put a noose in the car of a black firefighter. In the second, some horseplay on the phone resulted in what someone thought was a bomb threat and caused the partial evacuation of a fire house. Read and watch the story.
Woman who is former FDNY lawyer is in the running to be next commissioner: A lot of talk in New York about Mylan L. Denerstein. Denerstein used to be the FDNY’s deputy fire commissioner of legal affairs and is now on the short list to be the next commissioner. Read all about it here and here.
Are background checks and psychological evaluations worth it?: That question is being asked in Maine which has had some recent bad headlines because of firefighters accused of arson. The discussion is over the cost in dollars for the return and the cost in losing firefighter candidates who might not want to go through the process. Read more.
Fire chief and township manager will not be punished for keeping sex offender on department: An interesting story from Plainfield Township, Michigan. City officials decided not to take any action against the chief and manager after an on-call lieutenant was arrested. The two men knew that Jeffrey Hawkins was a registered sex offender. It came to light when Hawkins was charged a month ago with soliciting sex with minors online. Read more.
Video of EMS actions inside liquor store prompts investigation: In Atlanta, an investigation is underway after a TV station showed surveillance video from inside a liguor store to fire department officials. The question is whether the first responders properly evaluated a man who was shot, before declaring him dead. Here is the latest story. Here is the original story and video. More from AJC.com.
Noose left in Virginia firefighter’s car. Two FFs suspended in Loudoun County. Third FF under investigation for unrelated bomb threat incident.30 comments
Two white career firefighters in Loudoun County, Virginia are suspended with pay after a noose was found in the car of a black firefighter. Loudoun County Department of Fire, Rescue and Emergency Management Chief Joseph Pozzo, while not providing details, confirms an investigation is ongoing. In an email to STATter911.com Chief Pozzo wrote, “When the Department learned of the allegation we took immediate action. . Employees under investigation are not currently assigned to any public duties.”
Sources familiar with the investigation, but not authorized to speak for the department, confirm the incident occurred the first week of December at the Station 5 in Hamilton. According to the sources, the two firefighters, one of them a rookie, put the noose in the car of their fellow firefighter. The black firefighter discovered it and brought it into the station. The sources tell us that the firefighter who was the victim was not happy, but did not pursue a complaint involving the incident. We are told the lieutenant of the station became aware of the noose and reported it to his superiors.
The two firefighters, now under suspension, face the possibility of losing their jobs. They are currently on administrative leave with pay.
A third career firefighter in Loudoun County is suspended in an unrelated incident that occurred a few days later. A call came into Station 6 in Ashburn on December 6 that was perceived as a bomb threat. According to sources the phone call was traced to Station 2 in Purcellville. A career firefighter from Purcellville who had apparently been involved in some prank phone calls back and forth between the two fire stations is under investigation.
Chief Pozzo replied responded to STATter911.com’s questions about this incident via email:
LCFR did receive an allegation that what you have described occurred. As with the other incident when the Department learned of the allegation we took immediate action. This matter is also currently under investigation. The employee under investigation is not currently assigned to any public duties. As the matter is under investigation I cannot comment any further.