Video: Ohio activist says FF sprayed him with hose while he was filming crime scene

The video filmed by the activist appears to show the firefighter aim the hose at him before saying "it's a crime scene, dude"


Sean McDonnell
Akron Beacon Journal

AKRON, Ohio — An Akron firefighter is under scrutiny after an area activist said he was sprayed with a hose while filming a crime scene.

The incident, which was captured on video and uploaded to YouTube, happened Saturday after a reported stabbing near Haven of Rest Ministries.

Ryan Ohio Protests, the YouTube channel of a local activist who films authorities at crime scenes, was recording firefighters as they washed the sidewalk and the entrance of the building where the stabbing happened.

There is no crime scene tape seen at the time of the recording.

Ryan, who was sprayed and filmed the incident, asked that his full name not be used due to harassment he's gotten from posting the video.

About one minute and 15 seconds into the video, Ryan moves closer to the scene and entrance to the building and continues to film as he speaks to someone entering the Haven of Rest about the stabbing.

One minute and 50 seconds into the video, the firefighter manning the hose appears to ask Ryan to move. He walks backward to the about area he was filming from before.

About 15 seconds later, the firefighter turns the hose and sprays Ryan for a few seconds.

At this point, the firefighter says "it's a crime scene, dude." Ryan responds that he doesn't see any tape, and the firefighter again tells him it is a crime scene.

The video goes on for another two minutes as Ryan continues to film.

Akron Fire Department Public Information Officer Lt. Sierjie Lash said the department is looking into what happened. She said the incident happened at about 6 p.m. Saturday and confirmed firefighters were on scene cleaning after a stabbing.

Lash said she didn't have any details to share Monday morning, including the firefighter's name or if anyone was placed on leave because of the incident. But she said the video was concerning for the department.

"From what the community has been seeing, this is not how we like our personnel to act or react," Lash said.

Ryan described himself as an activist for both the First Amendment and for the homeless community. His YouTube channel has several videos both filming police at crime scenes and of Akron City Council representatives' comments at meetings.

In a statement emailed to the Beacon Journal, he said that he wants the fire department to discipline both the firefighter who sprayed him and the other members of the crew with him.

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(c)2021 the Akron Beacon Journal (Akron, Ohio)

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