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Springfield Fire Captain Arrested for DUI
A Springfield fire captain is on thin ice after being arrested for driving under the influence. Reports show this is not the first time Springfield Fire Captain Thomas Dodd has been arrested for DUI. Dodd has two prior arrests and once conviction.
Whether this most recent arrest will cause him to hang up his fire hat remains to be seen.
"Basically we got a call from a citizen," Springfield Police Department Deputy Chief Cliff Buscher said. "Person appeared to be intoxicated, thought they were passed out in their vehicle."
A rude awakening for Dodd after police said a Thornton's worker found him sleeping in his car. According to a five-page police report, the worker watched as Dodd zigzagged into Thornton's car wash. Apparently that wasn't enough to wipe his record clean.
"It's not like you're on base if you're driving under the influence and you're almost home or you make it to the driveway you're still driving under the influence," Buscher said.
Police said Dodd was trying to drive home. Their flashing lights and air horn were not enough to get him to stop. They didn't even know who it was until they got the vehicle stopped, Buscher said.
But they quickly found out. According to the report, Dodd made the first mention that he was under the influence and he reportedly tried to bargain with the officers, saying, "I can't get another DUI. I'm a city employee just like you."
"Firefighter. Policeman. Anybody. Just because you work for the city, just because you work for public safety, you still have to go by the law," Buscher said.
That fact is echoed in the State's Attorney's Office, where Dodd's case now rests.
"He's looking at a stiffer penalty," State's Attorney John Milhiser said. "These are class A misdemeanors, so jail time is a real possibility, and we will most likely be asking for that from the judge should this individual be convicted."
As of now, Dodd is still an active employee at the Springfield Fire Department. Springfield Fire Chief Ken Fustin said while Dodd's position does not usually require him to drive, it is not out of the realm of possibility.
City records show Dodd has worked for the Springfield Fire Department since 1994 and makes nearly $84,000 a year.