Firefighter fired after drunken incident

VALENCIA COUNTY, N.M. (KRQE) – New details have been released Tuesday about two Valencia County firefighters accused of showing up to a scene drunk.

It happened on New Year’s Day at around 1:30 a.m. when fire officials were called to a fire at a mobile home in Los Chavez.

That’s when Cpt. Nathan Gonzales and a volunteer firefighter allegedly showed up to the scene intoxicated.

On Tuesday, KRQE News 13 learned the volunteer firefighter was suspended for a week.

As for Gonzales, he was given a written reprimand and fired.

County officials say the firing has nothing to do with the allegations, but for violating the county’s nepotism policy. Gonzales’ brother is the fire chief.

The chief spoke to KRQE News 13 on Tuesday and said his brother claims he was not drunk at the fire that morning, but knows it didn’t look good for the department.

“We did review the policies and procedures and held a training with our chief’s council meeting and we reviewed everything and we fully expect the district chiefs take it back and distribute it across their personnel,” said Chief Steven Gonzales of the Valencia County Fire Department.

County officials say there seems to be some issues between the volunteer staff and the paid staff, so the county has hired a person to conduct an operational audit between two agencies.

That report should be complete in about a week or so.

blog comments powered by Disqus