As Tacoma firefighters battled a blaze at a Hilltop home on the night of Tuesday June 11th, a command pickup truck, referred to as Battalion two, was stolen.
According to charges filed in Pierce County Superior Court, Clinton Scott, 38, jumped in the truck that was at the scene idling with red lights flashing and just drove away. Then he picked up the radio.
When an unidentified firefighter radioed, “Uh, if any of you moved battalion two, let me know”. Scott allegedly replied, “Battalion two had to be moved it was priority over at the other place (unintelligible) I’ll get a ride back and meet you at the rendezvous asap.”
That exchange tipped off crews that the truck had been stolen, not simply moved.
“Okay who is this reporting battalion two being moved,” the firefighter asked.
“The sarge,” responded Scott.
The firefighter’s response came quickly, “Battalion two may have been stolen from the scene, could you dispatch TPD (the Tacoma Police Department) to that?”
Scott babbled as crews followed the moving truck through a computer tracking system at one point saying into the radio, “This is battalion two, who is this? Anyone here?”
A little less than five minutes after it was missing, the truck was stopped by Tacoma police at a fire station in the city’s Proctor neighborhood. It was not damaged.
Scott was taken into custody and later charged with theft of a motor vehicle, driving on a suspended license and drug possession.
And two dispatchers even managed to get a good laugh out of the incident, one saying, “that was crazy, I’ve never seen that one before.”
“Yeah that’s a new one for us too,” another responded.