Bedford Firefighter Suspended Without Pay After OWI Charges

(BEDFORD) – A Bedford firefighter has been suspended without pay for a period of 60 days following his arrest for operating a vehicle while intoxicated.

According to a probable cause affidavit, 30-year-old Mark Andrew Roberts was arrested on February 23rd after he crashed his vehicle into another vehicle in a parking garage on Walnut Street in Bloomington. No one was injured during the incident.

Roberts was arrested on charges of operating a motor vehicle while endangering a person, a Class A misdemeanor and operating a vehicle with a blood alcohol content of 0.15 percent, a Class A misdemeanor.

Police say Roberts smelled of alcohol and showed signs of impairment.

Roberts joined the Bedford Fire Department in February of 2016.

The following are the actions taken by the Board of Works, Bedford Fire Department and Mayor Sam Craig after meeting in executive session on two occasions and speaking with Roberts.

In exchange for the Bedford Fire Department foregoing more serious disciplinary action to address Robert’s misconduct, Roberts agrees to accept all of the following disciplinary actions: 

  • A suspension without pay for a period of at least sixty (60) days beginning at 7 a.m. on April 20, 2020, and ending at 11:59 p.m., on June 19, 2020, or until Roberts driving privileges are reinstated without restriction, whichever is later.
  • Roberts will return to work on June 20, 2020, at the start of his assigned shift or the day following the date the State of Indiana reinstated his driving privileges without restriction, whichever is later.
  • Roberts will be on probation for a period of two years.
  • During the probationary period, Roberts shall comply with all rules and regulations of the Bedford Fire Department, he shall perform his job responsibilities in accordance with the expectations of the Bedford Fire Department, and he shall refrain from committing any act of misconduct related to or impacting his employment with the Bedford Fire Department.
  • Roberts understands and agrees that he is accepting this zero-tolerance action during the two-year probationary period and that any act in violation of the requirements shall result in an immediate recommendation by the Administration to the Board of Public Works & Safety that he be dismissed from the Bedford Fire Department.
  • During Roberts’ suspension, Chief Hughes may call Roberts into work in the event of an emergency or in the case the Bedford Fire Department is short-staffed. In that event, Roberts will receive prorated pay based upon the rate of pay he was receiving prior to the suspension. The suspension period set forth above shall be tolled during any period Roberts is called into work and his reinstatement date shall be extended by the number of days he worked.

Officials say Roberts understands that this is his last chance to conform his conduct to meet the standards and expectations of the Bedford Fire Department. He further understands that any future incident of misconduct or any violation of any of the terms and conditions imposed upon him during the two-year probationary period will be resulting in an immediate recommendation that will be dismissed from the Bedford Fire Department.

“He has manned up to this and apologized for his actions,” said Bedford Fire Chief John Hughes.

Roberts was on paid administrative leave until the actions taken by the Board of Works on Monday afternoon.