The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

News

October 11, 2012

Cops enter Sunbury fire department probe

— SUNBURY — City police are investigating the former treasurer of a Sunbury fire house who Thursday was banned for life from the company for “improper behavior.”

A panel of 18 members of the Rescue Hose Fire Company levied accusations against Rick Sinko, the city’s third assistant fire chief.

Mayor David Persing was informed Thursday by letter of Sinko’s banning, and when questioning the board’s decision, was told it related to finances. Sinko was banned from the volunteer force after Rescue board president Stanley Wirth said an investigation was under way for the past two months concerning Sinko and a female bartender.

The fire company issued a letter to city officials on Thursday informing them of its decision, Wirth said.

Sunbury Fire Chief Mike Rhoads confirmed that Sinko has been ousted, and that he may not respond to any city fires.

“This is a single department issue and has nothing to do with any other departments in the city,” Rhoads said. Mum on “improper behavior”

Neither Wirth nor Rhoads would explain the “improper behavior.”

When Persing questioned the improper behavior, he was told it related to finances.

“I asked Stanley Wirth what this was about and all he said was it was a financial issue,” Persing said. “We are not going to hide from anything in this city and I am not sure how much money they are talking about.”

Sunbury Police Chief Steve Mazzeo confirmed that the Rescue Hose Company filed a complaint against Sinko and an investigation has begun.

“This is an ongoing investigation and we can’t comment at this time,” Mazzeo said.

Sunbury City Council was also informed of Sinko’s lifelong ban. Councilman Jim Eister said after receiving the letter from the fire company he immediately contacted Wirth and they met to discuss the letter at City Hall.

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