KOMO 4 – Tracy Vedder

Tracy Vedder, Investigative Reporter for KOMO 4 News, has this story



The EMT’s actions that day beg some questions.

Do you really think this is the first time EMT Church contacted a patient? Or just the first time he was caught? Are there others that felt violated that were afraid to come forward?

We have seen many cases where a single complaint made public resulted in many reluctant victims coming forward. Time will tell.




As mentioned by NWFreeman: “NOT reporting the discipline to the Department of Health is what got him in trouble with his license.”


Firefighters Union president  Ryan Herrera is asking for facts.

On March 12, 2012 South King Fire & Rescue EMT Brandon Church, son of SKF&R Fire Chief Allen Church, was found guilty of professional “misconduct” during a department investigation conducted by fire department employees that serve at the pleasure of the chief. This investigation should have been turned over to an outside agency, like the Department of Health, to remove any perception of favoritism or nepotism.  But for some reason the fire department chose to keep it internal.

(BTW, to address when and how did the EMT got her telephone number.

In that investigation, the treating EMT’s said they knew her telephone number but decided not to call her before going back to her unlocked and unoccupied home to retrieve a piece of medical equipment they left there. So he really had no need to ask for it on FB.)

EMT Church received what most consider severe discipline for his actions. That is not the root of the issue here.

This is. Part of his discipline was a one year probation.

A condition of employment for all firefighters at SKF&R is current and valid EMT license.

Less than nine months later, in October/November 2012, while on probation for unprofessional conduct, EMT Church was required to renew his EMT license. One of the questions asked if he had been found guilty of any violation of his license. Brandon Church answered NO.

DOH requires they be notified when any licensee has violated their license. Both the fire department and the licensee have less than one month from the finding of violation to make that notification. When the DOH was asked for their records in July of 2013, they were not aware of any issues with his license.

DOH then opened an investigation. Possibly regarding the page where Brandon Church signed under penalty of perjury that the application is true and accurate to the best of his knowledge.

In August 2013, the board of commissioners held a Special Meeting with a 4-1 vote

“Commissioner Fossos making a motion, I move that the South King Fire & Rescue Board of Fire Commissioners approve retaining Patterson, Buchanan, Fobes & Leitch to represent Brandon Church in his official capacity as a District firefighter in the pending Department of Health investigation. Motion was seconded by Commissioner Thompson. Motion passed 4-1 with Commissioner Freitas voting in opposition.”

Fire district attorney Joe Quinn said there’s been no special treatment and the chief has not been involved in his son’s discipline. But every employee who was involved serves at the pleasure of the chief. So they were all fair and reasonable, right?

And what has the chief to lose? How about the possibility of a $340,000 severance check the commissioners granted him during a financial crisis at the same time the district was laying off firefighters?

Read the actual investigation into EMT Church

Decide if EMT Church committed perjury. Read question 7 on page 5 of his DOH renewal application

Minutes of the special meeting

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