CAUGHT ON CAMERA: Truck driver arrested for crossing fire hose, says it was a mistake

Body camera footage obtained by Channel 3 shows the moments after a Chattanooga truck driver drove over an active fire hose, leading to his arrest. Two separate body cameras, worn by responding Chattanooga Police officers, captured Joel Dawson’s arrest. According to police, Dawson drove an unloaded tractor-trailer over an active fire hose that was being used to fight a fire at Shooter’s Depot last week. When Dawson crossed the line with his truck an officer ran after him. The video shows Dawson apologize while an officer placed handcuffs on him. “There was no sign that said not to,” Dawson can be heard telling the officer. “You have got vehicles blocking the road,” the officer screams. Dawson then responds by apologizing to the officer. A second officer then asks Dawson if he saw the hose while escorting him to a patrol car. The driver can be heard telling the officer he did not intend to do anything wrong. “We believe this was an honest mistake by truck driver, Joel Dawson,” said Lee Davis in a written statement. Davis is representing Dawson when he goes to court on charges of reckless endangerment and crossing a fire hose.

“Mr. Dawson immediately stopped his truck once he realized that he crossed over the hose and complied with all requests by police. We hope to get this case resolved once we get to court and prosecutors can see for themselves the video of the incident which we believe corroborates Mr. Dawson’s account of events.” At the time Dawson drove over the fire hose there were four people inside Shooter’s Depot working to contain a fire. According to the fire department’s protocol, the $500 section of hose had to be disposed of after Dawson drove over it. The video also shows a representative of Kenco, the company Dawson was driving for, apologize to officers and offer to cover the cost of the damage. Dawson is set to go before a judge on April 18. According to Hamilton County court records, this is the first time he has faced a criminal charge.


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