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UPDATED – No surprise: Media asking questions & Macon-Bibb County chief looking for answers in gunman scaring rookies prank. Chief is 'deeply saddened' by video.

Earlier coverage & comments about this video

It is rare that you find near unanimity in the comments section, but this video from Macon-Bibb County Fire Department's Station 108 has done the trick. So far today, with more than 60 comments, there have been three major themes:

1. This was a bad stunt to even think about performing.

2. It was a terrible idea to have a camera rolling while this was going on.

3. It was even a worse idea to post the video to YouTube (and with credits!!!). 

The video was added to YouTube Sunday evening, removed about 12-hours later, and then reposted by someone else. In the meantime, besides being seen on,, Firefighter Nation and now, it also caught the attention of the local news media this morning. They have been in touch with the fire department and the mayor's office. 

In an updated more detailed article for Tuesday' paper here's what reporter Amy Leigh Womack got from Chief Marvin Riggins and other city officials:

Riggins first viewed the video about 11:50 a.m. with Macon’s chief administrative officer, Thomas Thomas, and mayoral spokesman Clay Murphey.


It was clear that the video exhibited behavior “that would not be condoned in his department,” Murphey said of the chief’s reaction. “I imagine there will be repercussions.”

Riggins said he’s “deeply saddened” by the video.

“This isn’t the way we treat our employees,” he said.  Riggins said he didn’t know the identity of the original poster who used the online handle “FirefighterBoomer519.”

The department has policies prohibiting hazing and firearms, he said. also talked to County Commissioner Lonzy Edwards who heads the Public Safety Committee:

Besides the video seemingly showing public safety employees in positions of responsibility wasting time paid for by taxpayers, Edwards noted that it also comes at a time when Macon and Bibb County have been trying to find solutions to recent gun violence.

WMAZ-TV talked to the mayor's spokesman, Clay Murphey:

Murphey says the chief recognized several of the firefighters in the video, including a captain, and believes it is authentic.

At the end, it rolls a list of credits. Murphey says all of the names are employees of the fire department.


Comments - Add Yours

  • Ron, retired Chief

    This is what happens when you let kids into the fire service. The fire station is to place for college pranks. Fire the whole damn bunch and hire ADULTS.

  • Steve

    It was a freaking prank, Oh but we have to be sensitive to everybodies needs, and we wonder why the world is the way it is, pull the sticks out of yur rears.

  • Taylor

    I’m glad that of the 60+ comments about this topic, only two have said that this stunt was harmless. The rest saw the possible repercussions…

  • Fa Solatido

    This wasn't a prank. It was a disaster from the moment of inception.
    Dumping a bucket of cold water on a rookie = prank.
    Shrink Wrapping the rookie's bed = prank.
    Pretending to be a thug with a handgun in a firehouse holding them hostage = absolutely insane and not at all funny.
    This isn't about sensitivity. What if a fire marshall or a police officer had stopped in to take a leak or grab a cup of coffee when this occurred and had drawn their weapon on the "thug" and SHOT HIM because they thought he was legit? I bet you Cops don't pretend that the building is on fire and run around yelling 'fire' inside the police station.
    Idiots like these people are why we have such ridiculous rules in the fire service and other places. You'd think that we (the fire service) would have a LITTLE more common sense.
    If you want to scare the rookie, hide under their bed or in their locker and surprise them. Don't pretend to hold a .45 to their head.
    All these employees, especially the officer, would have to try really hard to convince me not to fire them if I was their boss. But that's just me.

  • Ken Rossignol

    A failure to fire those in this video would be a failure of leadership.  There is likely a long list of applicants to replace these fools.


    I'm certified by our county (issued by Sheriff's Office) to carry a concealed weapon for self protection.  I've gone through self-defense training with my various handguns at sponsored events (certificate issued after passing) and shoot monthly both straight bullseye (target) and scenario (obstacles, room scenarios, obstacles, etc) 
    I am an advocate of carrying self defense firearms during social (non-work) times–as crime rises; so does the need to protect yourself and your family.  All firearms are secured with gun-locks and fire-proof, highest technology locking gun safes at my residence.  These two paragraphs are to explain that I am licensed, proficiently trained, and legally carrying a firearm; understand what parameters exist to utilize the firearm when life is trreatened.
    Scenario–adhering to all policies that no firearms/explosives/etc–are permitted while on duty (we have a policy requirement issued by the state)–I've never worked with a firearm on or in my possession–26 years..
    I stop in to pick up paper paycheck on stretch off-(automatic deposit) which is just an excuse to swing by and get some coffee.  I'm passing by, while legally possessing a firearm–I witness mutliple gun shots to the "down" victim–my brother; literally my brother works with me.  No one lets me in on the "prank"–brothers are down, gunman is shooting, chaos is ensuring–the gun is pointed at me–I have no retreat…I know he has "lshot and killed" already–I return fire with 2 rounds and score to center mass (because I don't hold my firearm sideways and actually fire correctly) like the movies and like seen on Gangland the series–NOW WHAT?
    First, know that I have seen firearams in and around station houses–no one can tell me they haven't–I've seen them in lock boxes mostly though (in vehicles)–NONE ever on duty.. Many have brought in new firearms to show other gun enthusiasts, mostly in the parking lot or in the truck bay area.   They go back to lock boxes or the off-duty leaves with his new firearm after everyone ew's and ah's about the new acquisition.
    There are documented reports of FF personnel carrying concealed weapons–research it.
    The scenario–or prank–could have very well ended many normal lives–from the "shooter" to my very own….a risk I take by carrying a firearm.  Your believes are yours–mine are mine–so go fair on that one.  
    Now a prank has a "shooter down" and a legally armed citizen dealing with defending his life by taking anothers–and learns it was a prank?  Life changing.  If it was real, and you arrested a "mass murder" of your brothers–I could live with that–but his scenario–it's indescribable.
    Prnaks included getting taped into a shopping cart in your gutchies–and rolled down the street in the 80's, a tray of ice down the back of the newbies pants, and simple-simple-simple fun.
    Terminations are in order–no exception, no discrimination, no anything–they need to go.

  • Former Chief

    Firehouse pranks have probably been around as long as the fire service.  It's part of the camaraderie that defines the fire service.  But, this is just WAY over the line.  One sentence sums this up. YOU CAN'T FIX STUPID!

  • joe

    First things first, I love firehouse pranks. This isn’t a prank, its idiotic and way over the line. Never should have been done. Second, when I do pull a prank I don’t tape it and post it online so everyone can see. These idiots need to stop posting everything at work to YouTube or Facebook. Keep it in house.