Ind. 'Meltdown' Fire Chief Voted Out of Office

SELLERSBURG, Ind. --

A southern Indiana fire chief getting heat for his behavior at the scene of a fatal ambulance accident is being replaced.

Sellersurg Volunteer Fire Department Chief Greg Dietz lost a vote to retain his job on Monday night.

The vote came less than a week after Dietz's outburst at the scene of Clark County EMT David Gundle's fatal accident.

Dietz tried to take control of the scene from Clark County sheriff's deputies, getting on the radio to change the landing location for the stat flight helicopter.

"Everybody out here is having a fit about everything. Ya'll just need to curb their heels and calm the hell down. Tell the helicopter to go the high school," Dietz can be heard saying in the dispatch tapes.

"At the scene, we had people who were wanting to kill him and go after him," Clark County Sheriff Danny Rodden said.

Rodden said the choice of Henryville High School was a poor one because school was getting out, but Dietz continued to push with a profanity-laced message to dispatch.

"County police need to worry a little bit more about traffic out here, a little bit more than where we're going to land the helicopter," Dietz said on the tape.

Based on his behavior at the scene, which officials said also included cursing and giving obscene gestures to officers, despite a 15-year spotless record as a volunteer with the Sellersburg Police Department, Chief Russ Whelan took Dietz's police badge from him on Friday.

"I believe we are held to a higher standard and as the chief we're even to a higher standard," Whelan said.

Dietz issued a written statement reading in part, "I extend my humble and most sincere apology to all those I have offended."

"I hope that time will heal any strained relationships, as I know that time will help me from the loss of David."

This may have been the icing on the cake for him, but I think it was coming anyway. I think the guy was on his way out because of his attitude and everything else," Clark County Sheriff Danny Rodden said.

Boyce Adams will now serve as the new chief of the Sellersburg Fire Department.

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