Waco: Fired firefighter fights to get his job back

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WACO, Texas (KWTX) Bill Dudley, a former Waco firefighter and one-time member of the Bandidos who was placed on indefinite suspension four years ago is fighting to get his job back, but he’ll have to wait until January for an arbitrator’s decision after an eight-hour hearing Tuesday in Waco.

Bill Dudley, a former Waco firefighter and one-time member of the Bandidos who was placed on indefinite suspension four years ago is fighting to get his job back. (Photo by John Carroll)

Crowley police arrested Dudley following a traffic stop two days before the May 17, 2015 shootout between members of rival biker groups including the Cosacks and Bandidos at Waco’s Twin Peaks restaurant.

He was not involved in the shootout.

His arrest on May 15, 2015 came after officers spotted a handgun on the seat of his truck and discovered some items linking Dudley to the Bandidos during a search of the vehicle.

After the arrest in Crowley and what officials described as three other violent incidents, then Fire Chief John Johnston called for an investigation that led to a decision in October 2015 to place Dudley on indefinite suspension.

While Dudley testified Tuesday that he had been a member of the Bandidos, he told the arbitrator he was no longer affiliated with the group.

Dudley also said he was wrongly arrested because the gun was not visible to officers, but attorneys representing the City of Waco produced documents that showed that Dudley entered a guilty plea and served two years on unadjudicated probation on the gun charge.

Other testimony confirmed Dudley had been shot in the chest in 2014 at a club in Fort Worth, and was present with other bikers when they followed a car and fired on it.

Dudley did not fire any of the gunshots.

The city’s attorneys also showed photos of the Bandidos vest Dudley used to wear.

“The city has now presented our case and witnesses, and it’s up to the judge to make the final decision,” acting Waco Fire Chief Kevin Vranich said.

Philip Burnett, President of the Waco Professional Firefighters Association told KWTX, “The Texas State Association of Firefighters and the Waco Professional Association of Firefighters want to make sure that Bill Dudley receives all he’s entitled to under Civil Service rights as firefighters pursuant to the Texas Local Government Code. “