Fire Chief Quits in Picture Scandal


 
 

Stephen HudakHelen Eckinger | | Wednesday, January 9, 2008


ORLANDO -- Florida Fire Chief Richard Shirk resigned Monday, after igniting a scandal by sharing pictures of a fatal accident that included an image of a nearly-nude female victim.

Last week, City Manager Glenn Irby said that he planned to fire Shirk. On Monday, Irby said that Shirk had handed in his resignation, effective immediately.

In a Dec. 12 report, Umatilla Police Chief Doug Foster said that Shirk showed a lack of concern for the victim and embarrassed the fire department when he e-mailed pictures of the 26-year-old woman to fire departments in Mount Dora, Eustis and Leesburg.

In two of the images, the woman's breast is visible. The woman died after the early November crash.

According to Foster's report, Shirk said he intended to use the photographs for training.

Shirk was hired as fire chief in October. Before that he worked as a paramedic and for Oviedo's Fire and Rescue Department, which fired him in 2004 for insubordination, according to Connie Collins, Oviedo's human-resources director.


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