Three firefighters were already on the scene of an auto collision Friday night to investigate the crash, when a fourth fighter crashed into them, causing his own criminal investigation in the process.
Now, that fourth firefighter is facing charges of driving while intoxicated causing death and reckless driving, according to a news release from Indiana State Police. Officials at the Daviess County Security Center, where Blake is being held, told McClatchy that charges would be formal brought on Monday.
Firefighters from nearby Montgomery and Cannelburg arrived in their own vehicles just before 10 p.m., responding to an injury crash along Highway 50 in the southwest corner of Indiana. One of them was 27-year-old Kendall Murphy, a volunteer firefighter from Montgomery, who had parked his car on the side of the road.
Blake, 26, is a volunteer firefighter in Cannelburg, according to FOX59. His 2006 Dodge Ram struck the rear of one truck before crashing into Murphy’s car, which Murphy was standing next to at the time, according to the release. Blake then hit Murphy and another truck before he came to a stop, police said.
Both Cannelburg and Montgomery had populations under 500 according to the 2010 census.
Murphy suffered “numerous injuries after being struck,” the release said. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
Blake was not injured in the crash, but police said his blood alcohol content at the time was 0.21 percent, more than twice the legal limit in Indiana, which is 0.08 percent.
Alleged drunk driving on the part of firefighters is nothing new, though. A longtime firefighter in Mansfield, Mass. was accused of driving drunk with his daughter in the car in October.
In July, the 2016 Firefighter of the Year in LaPorte, Texas resigned after being charged with DWI when he crashed his truck into a home on his way to respond to a fire, according to KPRC-TV. Two San Antonio firefighters were pulled over for DUI earlier in the year as well, according to KSAT-TV.
FireRescue1, a news web site aimed directly at the firefighting community, even went as far to put up an online guide for people looking to get into the profession, but have a DUI on their record.