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Facebook community: Who was wrong, the officer or the firefighter?

By FireRescue1 Staff

The story of Wis. firefighter filing a $50,000 claim against the city after alleging a police officer used excessive force when he drew his gun during a traffic stop, drew some strong feelings from many of our readers.

Many from our Facebook community weighed in on the issue since the story was posted. Most sided with the officer, and some backed the firefighter, while some thought both were in the wrong. Here are some of the top comments we received from all points of view:

"The officer acted appropriately. One should stop when police are behind you. You're a volunteer en route to a refrigerator fire. The driver even agreed at the end of the clip. Good luck fella, you already lost." - Peter Kerby

"I have to side with the cop here; he's just doing his job and following procedure. Was him pulling the gun too much? He has a right to protect his life." - Mario Greco

"The officer acted appropriately. A specialty tag means nothing. Failing to yield to a police vehicle does. In the video, I did not see any rear-facing lights, making it difficult to tell if it were a volunteer responding or a 'COPS'-style pursuit. The speeds he reached while responding are unacceptable as well. If you crash while responding you not only are incapable of helping those who have requested it, you also have created a second emergency scene yourself. Slow down." - Garrett Crumby

"Nothing wrong with what the officer did or how he handled himself; in fact, I think he explained himself and handled himself quite well. I dont think volunteer firefighters should be allowed to run ex-police cruisers. Common sense would tell you that running an old cop car with lights is asking for trouble." - Dan Dawson

"You don't have the right to break any traffic laws responding to the station. Even with lights and sirens on your POV. That is how volunteers are killed..." - Jordan David Watson

"Both were wrong, but the officer ran the plate and knew who he was stopping. The ticket was to save face. The whole thing could have been avoided with an explanation and an apology." - David Thompson

"Wow I just watched this, and to be honest everything was handled with professionalism. I appreciated how the officer explained himself fully and just gone through the motions. To file a lawsuit is going to create such bad blood in this jurisdiction." - Gary Scollins 

"I have been a volunteer firefighter for over three years and to me this is making them both look bad. We should all get along. We both are there to be good icons and have everyone look up to us. We're there to help keep our community safe. This isn't helping at all." - Bradely Harris

"Yes, the officer executed a high-risk stop as his training indicated for him to do. But once the driver properly identified himself, that should've been the end of it. The citation and report was CYA on the officer's part." - Chris Weimer

"Getting to the call quickly is important but the fire/injury/accident will still be there if you take an extra minute to follow basic traffic laws and not cause another incident there." - Travis Ragone




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