Oklahoma Fire Chief Arrested, Intoxicated at Fire Scene

An Oklahoma fire chief was arrested at the scene of a fire after a state trooper determined the firefighter was under the influence of alcohol.

Haileyville fire chief charged with misdemeanor
public intoxication

Derrick James, Enid News & Eagle, Okla.

(MCT)

Mar. 9—An Oklahoma fire chief was arrested at the scene of a fire after a state trooper determined the firefighter was under the influence of alcohol.

William Mick, 48, of Haileyville, was charged Monday with misdemeanor public intoxication, according to documents filed at the Pittsburg County Courthouse.

Haileyville Mayor David Johnston said Mick was suspended pending an investigation. Johnston said Mick’s status would not be discussed at Tuesday’s city council regular meeting.

Jail records show Mick was released from the Pittsburg County Jail after posting a $100 bond.

Haileyville has a volunteer fire department headquartered at city hall.

FireRescue Magazine: Addressing Alcoholism in the Fire Service

In a probable cause affidavit prepared by Oklahoma State Highway Patrol Trooper Ashby Sutherland, the trooper wrote he responded March 6 to a fire on Buffalo Road in rural Pittsburg County and observed Mick “leaning back in the passenger seat of the fire engine.”

The report states Sutherland observed Mick with red, watery bloodshot eyes, unsteady feet, and an “extreme odor of an alcoholic beverage coming from his breath” along with droopy eyelids and thick slurred speech.

Mick told Sutherland he had an injury to his foot that was causing the balance issues before allegedly admitting to “drinking wine prior earlier in the evening,” the probable cause affidavit states.

Sutherland said in the report he only gave Mick the horizontal gaze nystagmus portion of the Standardized Field Sobriety Test due to the injury with Mick exhibiting “six clues” during the test.

According to the trooper’s report, Sutherland attempted to have Mick conduct the preliminary breath test “but Mick was unable to follow instructions and continued to suck on the straw while fake blowing.”

Records show the case is scheduled for the March 24 misdemeanor disposition docket.

Contact Derrick James at djames@mcalesternews.com

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