A Los Angeles firefighter who was arrested in Highland Park this past week for allegedly attempting to buy heroin from an undercover LAPD officer was assigned to in Eagle Rock before he was put on paid administrative leave following the incident.
Tony Ortiz, an LAFD captain at Fire Station 42, confirmed Tuesday that the arrested firefighter, Capt. Matthew Phillipsen, served at the Eagle Rock fire station, which is located on Colorado Boulevard, adjacent to . Ortiz, who offered Patch readers a set of chimney safety tips for the holidays last year—also confirmed that Phillipsen lives in Highland Park.
Phillipsen was arrested November 9 a block away from Fire Station 12 near Avenue 61 and North Figueroa Street during an LAPD undercover operation. The firefighter, who was off duty at the time of his arrest, is currently free on $10,000 bail.
Eagle Rock Patch received a tip Tuesday morning from a former public safety official who resides in Northeast Los Angeles about the station Phillipsen was assigned to.
LAFD Public Information Officer Jamie Moore told Eagle Rock Patch that he is not allowed to confirm the arrested officer’s work location because an investigation into his arrest is underway. “We’re waiting for the [LAFD’s] Professional Standards Division—that is, Internal Affairs—to allow us to give out that information,” he said.
Moore said that Phillipsen is scheduled to be arraigned on November 18 and that it may or may not take longer than that date for him to be given the green light on making public just where Phillipsen worked and where he lives.
Phillipsen had 31 years of service with the LAFD, Moore said, adding that the officer is eligible for retirement.
CBS reported on Friday that a KCAL 9 reporter tried unsuccessfully to contact Phillipsen at his home on the night of the arrest. CBS posted a video, which has since been taken down, in which the house was identified as being located in Highland Park.