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Seven Cobb firefighters disciplined after an internal investigation

"Official Statement"
August 2, 2023

August 2, 2023 – Seven Cobb County firefighters have been disciplined after an investigation revealed the group improperly worked together while taking a state-administered certification exam.  The internal investigation found the seven had collaborated on answers in a proctored-exam situation.

Four firefighters were demoted from Lieutenant to Engineer, and three others, two Engineers and a Firefighter, were suspended without pay.

“We are extremely disappointed by the poor judgment of these firefighters,” said Fire Chief William Johnson.  “We launched an investigation as soon as we learned of the accusation. Those involved cooperated with us and realized they had made a huge mistake. The punishment is severe but should send a message that this department will not tolerate any breach of ethical behavior.”

The firefighters had participated in a course allowing them to become instructors on specific fire apparatus operations.

Chief Johnson says the department will review how these courses are handled in Cobb County and work with the state to make any changes necessary.

“These are firefighters with otherwise spotless records,” Chief Johnson said.  “The discipline rendered hopefully reinforced all the values that the department embraces.  It is regrettable, but it shows we will handle these situations appropriately, knowing the department’s reputation is on the line.”

Cobb County Board of Commissioners Chairwoman Lisa Cupid was notified of the incident and the discipline.

“I appreciate that when this incident was brought up to leadership, they responded immediately,” Chairwoman Cupid said.  “I also appreciate that Fire and Emergency Services took decisive steps to discipline those involved and are taking steps to correct matters moving forward.”

Press Contact Info

Cobb County Communications | | 770-528-1155 | Webpage |