Thieves target Ladder 19 fire station on Detroit's east side - New York News

Thieves target Ladder 19 fire station on Detroit's east side

Posted: Updated:
Thieves stole equipment and more from the Ladder 19 fire house on Detroit's east side.  (Credit: Fox 2 News) Thieves stole equipment and more from the Ladder 19 fire house on Detroit's east side. (Credit: Fox 2 News)
DETROIT (WJBK) -

Detroit firefighters are under siege.  They're under-manned, under equipped, and now the guys at Ladder 19 say they've been violated by thieves in their own fire station.

"We feel violated because it's our home," said Ladder 19 Battalion Chief Robert Zygmontowicz.

They're some of the bravest men and women in the city.  They rush into burning buildings and save lives.  However, what happened inside an east side fire house proves there are some that see them not as heroes, but targets.

Zygmontowicz got the call Monday morning.  Someone had broken in through the basement window and treated the fire house like a free for all.

"They busted into some of the lockers, got a few radios," he explained.

Radios that cost hundreds, if not thousands of dollars, but the thieves didn't stop there.  They stole tools off the fire truck, a computer, a television, microwave and food that firefighters paid for themselves.

"Our job is to protect the citizens' property and lives, and when we're missing equipment it makes our job a lot harder," said Zygmontowicz.

So where were the firefighters when the thieves made their move?  They weren't at the fire house and haven't been there for weeks because that station like others across the city is closed most of the time.  It's firefighters are sent to work in other houses.  They leave the lights on and try to make it look like there is someone there, but as expected, some nearby opportunists figured it out.

Commissioner Don Austin released a statement saying in part, "Breaking into a firehouse and stealing from firefighters is a crime committed against the neighborhood and the people who depend on these first responders.  We will be more vigilant about taking safety precautions and interacting more closely with police officers who patrol fire stations within their precinct's area of responsibility."

How is the city going to replace the items that have been stolen?  The firefighters I spoke with said they don't expect the city to do it.  They think they will have to do it once again on their own.

UPDATE: Detroit's fire commissioner says firefighters won't have pay to replace their things.  That's because the existing labor contract between the city and the firefighters' union allows the city to replace the missing gear and compensate each firefighter for their stolen belongings.

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Suspect, rookie officer both wounded in gunfire

    Suspect, rookie officer both wounded in gunfire

    Sunday, August 31 2014 10:11 PM EDT2014-09-01 02:11:38 GMT
    Authorities say an early morning gunfire exchange on a Brooklyn street has left the suspect hospitalized and a police officer with a graze wound.
    Authorities say an early morning gunfire exchange on a Brooklyn street has left the suspect hospitalized and a police officer with a graze wound.
  • New MTA bus routes take effect

    New MTA bus routes take effect

    Sunday, August 31 2014 9:51 PM EDT2014-09-01 01:51:36 GMT
    MTAMTA
    The MTA has new bus routes throughout the 5 boroughs. 
    The MTA has new bus routes throughout the 5 boroughs. 
  • 3 hurt in lightning strike as storms batter NYC area

    3 hurt in lightning strike as storms batter NYC area

    Sunday, August 31 2014 9:47 PM EDT2014-09-01 01:47:41 GMT
    Heavy thunderstorms swept through the tri-state on Sunday causing flash floods and lightning strikes that injured 3 people. The three men were struck at Orchard Beach in the Bronx Sunday afternoon and were being treated at a local hospital. Meanwhile, various Labor Day weekend celebrations were interrupted, delayed and even canceled as the U.S. Open tennis tournament had to be postponed and the Electric Zoo musical festival on Randall's Island had to be prematurely shut down.
    Heavy thunderstorms swept through the tri-state on Sunday causing flash floods and lightning strikes that injured 3 people. The three men were struck at Orchard Beach in the Bronx Sunday afternoon and were being treated at a local hospital. Meanwhile, various Labor Day weekend celebrations were interrupted, delayed and even canceled as the U.S. Open tennis tournament had to be postponed and the Electric Zoo musical festival on Randall's Island had to be prematurely shut down.
  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • VP Joe Biden speaking in Detroit on Labor Day

    VP Joe Biden speaking in Detroit on Labor Day

    Monday, September 1 2014 10:29 AM EDT2014-09-01 14:29:13 GMT
    Vice President Joe Biden is in Detroit on Labor Day for the second time in three years. He addressed the crowd earlier this morning.
    Vice President Joe Biden is in Detroit on Labor Day for the second time in three years. He addressed the crowd earlier this morning.
  • RECALL: Kraft American Singles Cheese Slices

    RECALL: Kraft American Singles Cheese Slices

    Monday, September 1 2014 8:05 AM EDT2014-09-01 12:05:15 GMT
    Kraft voluntarily recalled 7,691 cases of its American Singles cheese product Friday because an ingredient was stored improperly by a supplier.
    Kraft voluntarily recalled 7,691 cases of its American Singles cheese product Friday because an ingredient was stored improperly by a supplier.
  • Minimum wage hike launches this Labor Day

    Minimum wage hike launches this Labor Day

    Monday, September 1 2014 7:30 AM EDT2014-09-01 11:30:54 GMT
    Minimum wage workers across metro Detroit and the rest of the state are getting a small raise this Labor Day.
    Minimum wage workers across metro Detroit and the rest of the state are getting a small raise this Labor Day.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices