A bill is being discussed in a Kansas Senate committee Tuesday that would give fire investigators law enforcement powers in the state.
This means, if an investigator encounters a crime in progress, they would have the legal right to pull-over, detain, and even arrest someone. The Kansas Fire Marshal, Doug Jorgensen, made clear during his testimony in favor of the bill that investigators would not be conducting traffic stops. Jorgensen referenced an incident where a drunk driver was driving on the wrong side of the road, a fire investigator pulled the driver over and detained them until police arrived.
“Prosecutors in the state were a little leery of bringing cases forward in court because it wasn’t really clear what our law enforcement powers were,” said Jorgensen.