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Former firefighter accused in standoff says he can't remember what happened

Josh Priddy Josh Priddy
Howard Priddy Howard Priddy

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) – A former firefighter, accused of killing a police K-9 dog and shooting a detective during a ten hour standoff claims in court he can't remember what happened.  

Josh Priddy, 31, went before a judge for the first time on Wednesday.

Through an open records request WAVE 3 obtained Priddy's file from his time as a Louisville fire fighter.

Before he was dismissed, Priddy was demoted and an old interview with WAVE 3 may be partly to blame.

For more than a decade Priddy served as a Louisville fire fighter. Moving quickly up the ranks, he was promoted to captain by the time he was 25, but a couple years ago his father, Howard Priddy, said his son's life started falling apart. 

"He ended up having a meltdown," said Howard Priddy.

In December of 2009, Priddy was demoted from captain to sergeant. In documents obtained by WAVE 3, the reasoning surrounds a trade report or switching shifts with another firefighter.

The one in question contained a forged signature. The documents go on to say that Priddy failed to set an appropriate example to other firefighters in part by conducting an on-duty interview without authorization.

The executive assistant fire chief wrote that his negative sentiment over the recent closing of a firehouse was the problem. WAVE 3 interviewed Priddy in 2009 when Engine 7 shut its doors. 

Priddy apologized for his actions in writing stating his decision was not motivated by malice, rather the result of life events occurring at work and at home. 

Then in 2011, Priddy's mother passed away. His father says he entered a deep depression. His file shows Priddy stopped showing up to work and was absent at last ten days in a row. According to a memo, he was fired after went AWOL from the division.

The documents show his fellow firefighters recognized something was going on and urged Priddy to see the doctor on hand available to the department. 

Priddy's father says he thought his son had the extra time off approved. "He specifically knows he was having mental issues at this point, he was asking the Louisville Fire Department to help him and they pretty much kicked him out the door," said Howard Priddy. 

Priddy is charged with 18 felonies including seven counts of attempted murder of a police officer and killing a law enforcement animal. He remains in the Clark County Jail on a $500,000 full cash bond. 

Copyright 2013 WAVE News. All rights reserved.
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