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Published: Friday, 1/4/2013

Toledo firefighter faces more charges in hit-skip crash

BY TAYLOR DUNGJEN
BLADE STAFF WRITER

A Toledo firefighter accused of being involved in two drunken hit-skip traffic crashes Sunday evening in West Toledo is to appear in court today on new charges.

Paul Heiss, 31, of 2354 Charlestown Ave. is set to be arraigned in Toledo Municipal Court on charges of driving while intoxicated, failure to stop after an accident, following too closely, unsafe backing, and failure to display license plates.

Mr. Heiss, a 10-year member of the fire department, already faced a single count of disorderly conduct while intoxicated.

All of the charges were filed after Mr. Heiss allegedly rear-ended a vehicle about 8 p.m. Sunday on West Sylvania Avenue near Douglas Road.

David Evans, Jr., 37, and Jamie Evans, 36, were stopped at a traffic light when their SUV was hit by a pickup whose driver then backed up and struck another vehicle, driven by Alexis Jamie, 24, according to a Toledo police report.

After the second crash the pickup fled, but one of the hit-skip victims recorded its license plate, police said.

No serious injuries were reported from either crash, but police said Mrs. Evans went to Mercy St. Anne Hospital for treatment of back and neck pain. Mrs. Evans said Thursday she was still receiving medical care for her injuries.

“Firefighter or not, drunken driving is a serious offense, so it doesn’t make a difference to us who did it,” Mrs. Evans said. “Hitting and running is a serious offense, and so it makes no difference to us who he was.”

Mr. Heiss has not been back to work since the incident. He called off sick for his first scheduled work day Wednesday, while Thursday was a scheduled day off, fire Lt. Matthew Hertzfeld said. His next scheduled work day is Sunday.

Fire department officials have said they would do an internal investigation and take appropriate action.

Toledo Firefighters Local 92 President Jeff Romstadt declined to comment, citing the ongoing inquiry.



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