SAN ANTONIO – A San Antonio firefighter was found "slumped over" in the driver's seat of a running vehicle in the parking lot of a far West Side gas station and was later arrested on suspicion of driving drunk, suspension paperwork obtained by the KSAT 12 Defenders reveals.
Anthony Salazar, an eight-year veteran of the San Antonio Fire Department, received a 60-day suspension May 18, more than four months after his January arrest.
The Fire Department released his suspension paperwork Thursday following an open records request.
The lengthy suspension is standard for San Antonio firefighters arrested on suspicion for DWI since the department instituted a stricter drunken driving policy in late 2014.
Although Salazar's suspension paperwork states it was a San Antonio Police Department arrest, SAPD and Bexar County court officials confirm that Salazar was actually arrested by Texas Department of Public Safety troopers.
An off-duty Salazar allegedly admitted to drinking "four to five 12-ounce beers" after troopers found him around 5:15 a.m. on Jan. 11 behind the wheel of a running vehicle in the parking lot of a Shell gas station at the intersection of Culebra and Galm roads.
Salazar is currently assigned to Fire Station 45.
His next court hearing is scheduled for Aug. 8.
In an unrelated incident early Sunday, an SAFD lieutenant was arrested on suspicion of DWI near the main campus of the University of Texas at San Antonio.
Lt. Abel Gomez, 43, was suspected of being under the influence while driving off-duty along the access road of Loop 1604 at Babcock Road.
An SAFD spokesperson said Chief Charles Hood was unavailable for an on-camera interview.
Hood released the following statement Thursday afternoon:
"The San Antonio Fire Department has, over the last few months, experienced an increase in the number of driving under the influence incidents involving its personnel. This trend is unacceptable and this type of behavior will not be tolerated.
After a thorough investigation, appropriate disciplinary action was administered in each of these instances, in accordance with SAFD policy. We hold ourselves to the highest of standards, and will continue to provide the highest levels of service possible to the citizens of San Antonio."