Hearing scheduled for fired Hammond firefighter

2012-11-12T00:00:00Z Hearing scheduled for fired Hammond firefighterSteve Zabroski Times Correspondent nwitimes.com
November 12, 2012 12:00 am  • 

HAMMOND | A second termination hearing has been scheduled for a city firefighter fired last year for allegedly phoning in a prank false alarm.

Thomas A. Markovich, 36, first appeared in March before the Board of Public Works and Safety over the charge, but a Lake Superior Court judge decided last month that the board's decision was invalid.

State law was violated because Markovich was dismissed prior to a required hearing of the case, ruled Judge John Sedia, rendering void both the original firing and the safety board's subsequent confirmation of the action.

A new hearing before the board has been scheduled for Dec. 6.

Hammond is appealing Sedia's ruling, which also ordered that Markovich be reinstated to his position, rank, salary, benefits and seniority retroactive to Dec. 1, 2011.

Fire Department officials allege that Markovich, a six-year veteran of the force, called a police non-emergency number with a nonexistent alarm on his cell phone while drinking with other firefighters in a Highland tavern on Aug. 17, 2011.

Markovich, a nephew of City Councilman Robert Markovich, D-at large, was charged with misdemeanor harassment over the incident, and faces a hearing before Judge Nicholas Schiralli in April.

A civil action filed in January by Markovich against Hammond, the Board of Public Works and Safety and five Fire Department officials has yet to be assigned a court date.

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