OFPD to punish firefighter charged in fatal crash
BY CASEY TONER email@example.com March 5, 2013 7:34PM
Updated: April 8, 2013 7:25AM
Orland Fire Protection District officials plan to meet Thursday with Cook County prosecutors before disciplining the lieutenant charged with reckless homicide in the death of a Downers Grove woman.
Patrick Bruce, 45, of Oak Forest, also is charged with failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident and reckless driving in the Friday crash that killed 25-year-old Anasis Knox. Bruce is due in court Thursday at the county courthouse in Bridgeview.
Jim Roche, an attorney for the fire district, said he or a co-worker will meet with prosecutors before the hearing to get details of the accident and the charges against Bruce. The district board will then proceed in disciplining him, Roche said.
“Obviously, this is a very serious, grievous situation,” he said. “This is not like someone got into a fight with their neighbor.”
During Bruce’s bail hearing Monday, prosecutors said he was on prescription pain medication, was weaving between lanes on 167th Street and was driving 60 mph in a 35-mph zone prior to the crash outside Tinley Park.
Bruce has been on leave from the Orland fire district since July 4 because of a work-related injury.
He’s also a part-time deputy fire chief in Crestwood. His brother, Jon Bruce, is the Crestwood fire chief and also a lieutenant for the Orland Fire Protection District.