June 11–OXFORD — Two members of the Oxford Fire Department, besides Lt. Mark Blaquiere, were disciplined for their roles in the Nov. 25, 2016, break-in of former Fire Chief Wayne Jones’ office.
According to documents obtained Friday, firefighter Kyle Hewey was terminated Jan. 31 after he admitted to interim Town Manager Becky Lippincott on Jan. 23 that he was directly involved in the burglary at the Oxford Public Safety Building on Route 26.
After viewing a surveillance video that showed Hewey walking across the fire bay with a door spreader in his hands and using it to open the chief’s office door, Hewey admitted he did it and that it “was something that never should have happened,” according to his letter of termination.
Additionally, video surveillance showed Hewey obtaining a box from the police station to pack up the chief’s belongings.
According to the termination letter, Lippincott found Hewey tampered with and damaged town property and was instrumental in breaking into the chief’s office and packing up his personal belongings. She wrote that his conduct showed “gross insubordination to the chief and the department and a complete lack of respect for the chain of command” and that his conduct was “not the conduct expected of a public safety officer for the town of Oxford.”
Lippincott wrote that Hewey’s conduct was “unacceptable and represented a dereliction of duty.”
Hewey was instructed to stay away from the Fire Department and not to interfere with the town’s public safety operations.
It is not known whether he appealed the case.
Firefighter Michael Doze was issued a written warning Dec. 20, 2016, that has been placed in his personnel file.
During a meeting with Lippincott on Dec. 15, Doze denied knowing anything about the incident, even though he was seen in a surveillance video working the day of the break-in.
Doze claimed, according to the Lippincott, that he was being targeted for complaining at the Dec. 5 departmental meeting that Jones was being “unsafe.”
Lippincott said her investigation was initiated Dec. 1.
She said based on the evidence presented to her, she believed Doze “at the very least” had knowledge of the incident and wasn’t truthful with (Police) Chief John Tibbetts or herself when questioned about it.
“I expect town employees to be honest and truthful,” she wrote in the warning letter.
Doze was notified that if he faced any other disciplinary action in the future he would be fired.
It is unclear whether he appealed the decision.
Blaquiere was fired Dec. 9 because surveillance video showed he participated in the break-in and packed up the chief’s personal items, according to his termination letter from Lippincott.
By Leslie Dixon, Sun Journal, Lewiston, Maine
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