‘Completely unacceptable’: 6 DC firefighters put on leave, man arrested after brawl caught on camera

A DC firetruck is seen in this file photo. (Courtesy DC Fire and EMS)

A man was taken into custody after he and a group of D.C. firefighters got into a physical fight on Tuesday night, according to an incident report from the Metropolitan Police Department of D.C.

In a police report, officials claim a man was acting aggressively toward a firefighter out on a 911 call at 14 Florida Avenue NW when the fight began. According to the report, the 43-year-old punched the firefighter in the face, beginning the altercation.

The Washington Post reported that charges were dropped against the man, according to D.C. Superior Court records.

A video of the fight that was posted on Twitter the next day shows multiple firefighters punching and kicking the man as another tackled him to the ground.

According to the police report, officers arrived on the scene and placed the man under arrest after the incident.

The DC Fire and Emergency Medical Services Department released a statement that called the actions of the firefighters in the video “completely unacceptable” and are not reflective of “the behavior we require of our members.”

The six emergency personnel involved in the altercation were placed on administrative leave while DC Fire and EMS conducts a joint investigation with the DC Metropolitan Police Department, according to the statement.

In a news release, the DC Fire Fighters Association representing union Local 36 responded to the incident and the response from DC Fire and EMS. The union said the firefighters put on leave were forced to defend themselves as well as the patient they were caring for, and added that the organization refuses “to pass judgment or make assumptions on the actions of the members until all facts are known.”

The union also said the video, which was broadcast by local TV news stations, showed a very small portion of the incident and did not fully portray what had happened.

Editor’s note: The man’s name has been removed from the story as he has not been charged. 

Emily Venezky

Emily Venezky is a digital writer/editor at WTOP. Emily grew up listening to and reading local news in Los Angeles, and she’s excited to cover stories in her chosen home of the DMV. She recently graduated from The George Washington University, where she studied political science and journalism.

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