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I-Team: New developments as suburb investigates firefighters for handing out candy

BROOK PARK, Ohio-- The FOX 8 I-Team is asking new questions about a story that has Northeast Ohio talking. Brook Park leaders are investigating some of the town’s firefighters for handing out candy while on duty Halloween night.

The I-Team was rolling Wednesday afternoon as Brook Park fire officials came out of a meeting with the mayor considering punishment.

The fire chief told us, "There's been no decision."

So we asked: What more is there to look at? The chief responded, "I can't discuss anything, sorry."

A veteran shift supervisor has been suspended with pay as the investigation continues. The firefighters took out an engine, an ambulance, and an SUV during trick-or-treating hours.

Parents loved seeing the firefighters pass out candy, and they can’t understand why city leaders would be mad about it. But the Brook Park mayor is angry about it. Tom Coyne argues the firefighters didn’t get permission, and he says they put residents in danger because they left a fire station and drove around in fire vehicles giving out candy.

The local firefighter union leader spoke out Tuesday evening at a Brook Park Council meeting. Matthew Wright said having an empty fire station on Halloween night was the same situation that comes up during parades and even fire inspections around town. Wright said, “So as you can see, the handing out of Halloween candy during trick-or-treating is no different.
I wanted to assure you that no lives were put in danger."

The I-Team requested 911 calls from Brook Park for the time of trick-or-treating. County dispatch only sent a handful including 3 for police about a fight in the street.

The fire union says no fire calls came in, and a crew did respond during trick-or-treating to an ambulance run.

Most taxpayers we’ve met or heard from at FOX 8 can’t believe an investigation into passing out candy would come to this. But the fire chief said he couldn’t even talk about how it all got to this point. “I can't really discuss it,” he said.

Union leaders believe the mayor is upset about other union issues, and that could be having an impact on this. Mayor Coyne says no.

We’ll update the investigation when the city of Brook Park finishes it.

**Read more, here**