Accused Tulsa Fire Fighter Imposter

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Updated: 7/15/2009 10:39 pm Published: 7/15/2009 10:28 pm

FOX23 News was the first to break the story and the first to tell you 22-year-old Joel Lack is now in custody.

The Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office says this guy posed as a firefighter during a deadly crash, he even assisted with patient care on the scene.

A suspected drunk driver hit a group of bicyclists on June 9th in rural Sand Springs.

Two of the cyclists died.

FOX23’s Abbie Alford reports on how investigators say he managed to pull this off.

When you have a badge and an urgency to save people’s lives there’s no time to question if there’s no apparent reason to question.

An affidavit says Joel Lack even assisted with patients and it wasn’t until after Life Flight noticed a bag of narcotics missing worth $1,685.19 that the questions started about who this man really was.

Responding to a deadly crash, one person dead and two others injured, investigators say the people responding to scene were the real emergency crews except for a man FOX23’s video caught on camera of a man police say wearing the orange t-shirt and posing as an off-duty Tulsa firefighter.

"With the chaos on the scene it was real easy for someone with the right equipment and right attitude to pull something like this off," says Sand Springs Fire Marshal Stan Smith.

In an affidavit the investigator says, “Lack was wearing a Tulsa Fire Department shield on his waist. Mr. Lack assisted and performed patient care. He was allowed to assist because he had a badge; the vehicle that he was traveling in had a Tulsa Fire Department vanity plate and a Tulsa Fire Department decal on the window."

Tulsa Fire officials say he’s never been issued a badge.

"He had nothing to do with the Tulsa Fire Department,” says Tulsa Fire Department’s Chief Officer Bill French.

The investigator says in the affidavit, “Tulsa Life Flight was delayed 6 to 10 minutes from takeoff due to the narcotic bags being taken.”

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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of KOKI FOX23 - Tulsa

Unwashed Mass - 7/17/2009 12:22 PM
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There were reports elsewhere that Life Flight simply misplaced the bag of narcotics and found it in their own helicopter, so some of these complaints may be overstated.
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