Stop Airing Mall Fire Audio, Calif. TV Station Told


The City of Roseville is demanding that KCRA 3 stop revealing Roseville Fire Department radio transmissions from the day of the Westfield Galleria at Roseville mall inferno.

"KCRA knows ... that neither the City of Roseville nor its fire department had authorized the disclosure of the audio recordings," Roseville City Attorney Brita Bayless said in a "cease-and-desist" request sent to KCRA 3 on Wednesday.

In its response, attorneys for KCRA 3 told Roseville city officials that the station's "publications of these recordings is fully protected by the First Amendment" even though the city "may be embarrassed by public disclosure of these recordings."

The request from the City of Roseville comes after KCRA 3 released multiple radio transmissions regarding the intentional shutoff of the mall's sprinkler system during the Oct. 21 blaze.

The latest radio transmissions show the frustration firefighters dealt with as law enforcement officers did not immediately include them in the initial response to the fire.

"I have not seen PD yet to form that unified command," Battalion Chief Kathy Finney is heard saying in one of the transmissions.

However, after suspect Alexander Piggee was taken into custody, firefighters were still repeatedly denied access into the mall to fight the fire because of concerns of a possible explosive device inside.

Roseville police, speaking at a news conference on Friday, defended the decision to keep firefighters out for safety reasons.

Document -- City Of Roseville's Letter To KCRA 3

Document -- KCRA 3's Letter To City Of Roseville

However, multiple sources within the firefighting community said the police department's actions and apparent lack of cooperation early in the incident may have allowed the fire to get out of control.

Copyright 2010 by All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.