The Wentzville Fire Protection District board won't say what's behind it, but four senior officers are no longer with the department. Three of them, including Fire Chief Randy Bornhop, had been placed on leave three months ago.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that Bornhop has now resigned. Assistant Chief Robb Watkins has been fired. Fire Marshal Joseph Heitkamp is on indefinite unpaid leave. And a fourth official, Fire Inspector Chris Newbold has also been laid off.
The leadership of the fire district has been in limbo since May when Bornhop, Watkins and Heitkamp were first placed on paid administrative leave.
The former fire chief of two districts is headed to prison after admitting to fraud, tax evasion, and stealing nearly $600,000 from his departments.
Eric Hinson will spend 35 months in federal prison and repay over $600,000. Hinson used fire district credit cards to pay for family vacations to Hawaii and Florida and business checks to pay for personal expenses. The investigation into the spending revealed he altered the fire department's books to cover up his theft.