Lt. Kellene Davis to retire, sources say
WASHINGTON (WJLA) - According to sources, D.C. Fire Lt. Kellene Davis plans to retire following accusations that her fire station stood by and did nothing as an elderly man died of a heart attack. She had been placed on desk duty this week.
Cecil Mills, 77, passed away on Saturday after suffering cardiac arrest outside Engine 26 in Northeast Washington.
Witness Marion Barrow works near this now infamous fire station and says that last Saturday concerned citizens rushed across the street to ask a firefighter for help after Mills collapsed near the sidewalk. But no one from the station would come.
"The daughter, herself, she was at the top of her voice hollering, 'Can someone please help my father?'" Barrow recalls.
Family members say they were told the firefighters couldn’t respond until they were dispatched by 911. Another crew eventually arrived, but they were too late.
Sources familiar with the investigation say some blame Lt. Davis, the one in charge that day.
ABC7 ran into Davis outside her home on Thursday after she returned from walking two dogs. After asking her if she would like to speak, she declined and asked crews to leave.
"Get off my property," she said.
But she did tell her side of the story in this correspondence with Fire Chief Kenneth Ellerbe. It states:
"…Firefighter G. Murphy informed me that someone had slipped and fallen across the street. I then asked Murphy to get me an address and I will be right there…Murphy did not return with an address."
She adds that she looked for and found Murphy in bed in the bunkroom, and claims he said he didn’t get back to her because an ambulance was already on the way:
"Why did he not return with the address? He stated, 'I told the probationer to give it to you. F/F J. Remy stated that that was a false statement. In conclusion, Murphy failed to follow a verbal order and provided a false statement."
Sources familiar with the investigation say firefighter Murphy’s account differs considerably from Lt. Davis’ version of events.
Now, flowers and candles mark the spot where Cecil Mills fell and died. And Marion Barrow believes this all should have ended differently.
"This is what you do. It would not have hurt him to take a minute to walk across the street just to come look," she says.
Another firefighter allegedly involved was placed on desk duty, and a third has been reassigned.