Commissioner: Rhode Island fire captain terminated for insubordination

  • Source: WPRI-TV Providence 12
  • Published: 03/10/2016 12:00 AM

A veteran Providence fire captain is out of a job for what Public Safety Commissioner Steven Pare is calling a “failure to take responsibility for his subordinates.” Dennis Tucker, who worked for the city’s fire department since 1988, was terminated last week after a three-member city trial board unanimously voted to approve the dismissal recommendation made by Pare. “He was absolutely adamant that it wasn’t his responsibility to manage his firefighters that may or may not have been taking excess sick time,” Pare told But records obtained by show that while Tucker’s refusal to enforce disciplinary action on his subordinates contributed to his termination, an angry email Tucker sent to Pare – and then forwarded to every member of the fire department – was a key reason for Tucker’s discipline. In a 10-page decision, the trial board found that an email Tucker forwarded to the entire fire department on Oct. 29 threatened Pare with legal action if he or any of his subordinates were to become injured was a “deliberate effort to undermine the leadership of the fire department and sow the seeds of dissent within the ranks of the department’s sworn personnel.”


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