Cop Cuffs Firefighter Who Was Helping Crash Victims
CHP officer ordered firefighter to move truck
By Rob Quinn, Newser Staff
Posted Feb 6, 2014 1:42 AM CST
Updated Feb 6, 2014 7:40 AM CST
Firefighter Jacob Gregoire was handcuffed and detained after he refused to move his rig.   (telestar)

(Newser) – In what fire and police chiefs are calling an "unfortunate incident," a firefighter tending to victims at a freeway crash scene Tuesday night was handcuffed and put in the back of a squad car by a California Highway Patrol officer. As CBS8 cameras rolled, the police officer ordered firefighter Jacob Gregoire to move his truck out of the fast lane of I-805 in Chula Vista, but he refused, said he would have to speak to his captain, and continued assisting the victims—a sedan had reportedly gone over a concrete guard rail—until the officer handcuffed him.

Gregoire, who has been with the Chula Vista fire department for 12 years, was released without charge after spending about 30 minutes in the back of a patrol car, when supervisors from both agencies intervened. One crash victim, meanwhile, was taken to the hospital. Chula Vista's fire chief says he stands by the firefighter. He says fire crews are trained to use their rigs to block incoming traffic to protect crash victims and emergency responders. "I know clearing the freeway is a priority for the CHP," he tells the San Diego Union-Tribune. "Our No. 1 priority is the safety of our firefighters and patients." He says he has met with CHP officials to discuss ways of making sure this never happens again. But as CBS8 points out, this isn't a first in California: In 2010, a Montecito Battalion Chief responding to a crash in Santa Barbara County was handcuffed by the CHP after also refusing to move a truck that was blocking traffic.

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Showing 3 of 159 comments
Feb 11, 2014 4:00 AM CST
Go ahead and flame me...I don't care! But I believe 110% that the majority of cops are a bunch of over zealous, sanctimonious, self righteous, two faced hypocrite drama queens! This CHP idiot cop is way out of line! How the heck did this imbecile become a cop..obviously the standards are set low.
Feb 9, 2014 12:14 PM CST
As a former EMT, the highway is not suppose to open until there is scene safety, The cop was not worried about the ff safety or patient care. Should be fired
Frank Baine
Feb 8, 2014 12:17 PM CST
How incredibly ignorant. Looks like the HP and FFs have a massive cooperation and joint integration problem when dealing with common incidents. Coupled with unib.row cops who are apparently inca.pable of independent thought and you have a complete public safety dysfunction. Perhaps the next CHP vehicle that ends up in a flaming wreck with the LEO trapped inside is observed by FFs who say they can't interfere because it will block that what you want you chippers? Makes you look like amateurs.