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Firefighter put on unpaid leave Tuesday

The Fort Wayne Fire Merit Commission put Michael Moring on leave Tuesday.

Posted: Mar 27, 2018 10:34 PM
Updated: Mar 28, 2018 9:34 AM

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WFFT) - A second Fort Wayne firefighter was put on unpaid administrative leave within a month.

The Fort Wayne Fire Merit Commission put Michael Moring on leave Tuesday.

Moring was arrested while on duty at fire station 15 Friday on felony stalking charges.

He is accused of sending inappropriate text messages to a woman from April 2016 until February 2017.

Court documents said the victim got lewd text massages and graphic pictures from a number she didn't recognize.

Documents state the woman only answered one message, in February 2017.

Police eventually traced the number to Moring.

According to the affidavit of probable cause, the victim was surprised Moring was the suspect because the two barely talked about painting her house.

Those accusations led the fire merit commission to put Moring on unpaid leave Tuesday.

Fire Chief Eric Lahey said that's standard for cases like this.

"Any time a firefighter stands charged of a Level A misdemeanor or a felony, I will immediately suspend the firefighter with pay," said Lahey.

Only the merit commission can put someone on unpaid leave.

Lahey said the Moring suspension will stand until his case plays out in the court system, then the commission has to reinstate him.

Moring was the second firefighter this month to be put on leave.

Matthew Brown was suspended after he was arrested on a domestic battery charge.

Brown is scheduled to be back in court April 10.

Moring's next scheduled court date is April 11.

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