Stunning video shows a California Highway Patrol officer handcuffing a firefighter who was trying to help victims of a serious car crash in Chula Vista.
The incident occurred on Tuesday night after a car overturned and another fell down an embankment on the 805 Freeway.
Chula Vista Firefighter Jacob Gregoire responded to the accident by following standard protocol of parking his fire truck in front of the crash scene to protect the victims as they were being treated and loaded into an ambulance.
However, when a CHP officer asked Gregoire to move the truck he refused and returned to helping the crash victims, prompting the officer to handcuff Gregoire and temporarily place him under arrest in front of a TV news camera.
This is ridiculous. CHP is arresting engineer for where he spotted the fire engine, states a voice on the Fire Department radio frequency. “We’re in the middle of patient care with patients on the freeway and we’re trying to protect our scene and they’re putting him in handcuffs at this time and walking him away.”
Gregoire was detained in a CHP squad car for half an hour before supervisors from both agencies arrived…
The firefighter was doing his job, the cop was doing his. What became of this?
The Chula Vista firefighter who was handcuffed by a highway patrol officer at a freeway crash site last month has filed a claim against the agency, claiming he was arrested “with malice.”
Firefighter/Engineer Jacob Gregoire told reporters Tuesday that he doesn’t want to file a lawsuit, but hopes the California Highway Patrol will settle the case by agreeing to not obstruct fire crews performing their duties on state highways.
“I’m not looking for compensation, I’m looking for policy change,” Gregoire said at downtown San Diego office of his attorney, Dan Gilleon.
Gilleon called the actions of CHP Officer Sergio Flores a violation of Gregoire’s Fourth Amendment rights against unreasonable arrest. He filed the claim for damages against the state claims board on Friday.
The agencies did work it out, it sounds like, and they issued a joint statement.
In a joint statement made with the Chula Vista Fire Department, the CHP wrote, “This was an isolated incident and not representative of the manner in which our agencies normally work together toward our common goal.”
Concialdi told Butler in 24 years of fire service he’s never heard of a firefighter being arrested for doing his job.