Call for gang policy for Pasco fire department

Posted at 6:42 PM, May 17, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-18 02:00:13-04

"I was blown away. Blown away!"

Pasco County Detective Brian Kozera, who runs the sheriff's gang unit, describes the moment he first spotted Pasco Fire captain and paramedic Glen Buzze in public wearing his Pagan Motorcycle Club vest.

Capt. Buzze is a known chapter president of the Pagan's, a "criminal motorcycle gang" defined by federal law enforcement.

I-Team: Uncovering the Tampa Bay firefighters who run with criminal motorcycle gangs

Buzze was also wearing the "1 percent" patch, which according to law enforcement means the 1 percent of motorcycle clubs that don't believe in following the law.

"They're the mafia on motorcycles, ya know. They're very organized. It's organized crime," Kozera said.

Kozera said he also spotted Buzze wearing "cracker bolts" on his vest, which is a known symbol for white supremacy.

ATF Agent Keary Hundt said the "cracker bolts" are "representative of the Nazi army."

As the I-Team first reported, Buzze's Facebook page included a post that stated "f*** cop clubs support your local 1 percent motorcycle clubs."

"He's against us he's not for us," Kozera said.

I-Team: Hillsborough firefighter says he's an Outlaw but not bar fighter

Federal and Pasco County authorities consider it a public safety issue due to his criminal gang status and the fact that firefighters and paramedics have access to sensitive information and sometimes work with law enforcement on sensitive cases.

"Do you feel having him in that position puts your life at risk?" the I-Team asked.

"Absolutely. Absolutely," Kozera said.

The I-Team has found at least three local county firefighters are members of criminal motorcycle gangs: Two "Outlaws" in Hillsborough County Fire Rescue and Capt. Buzze in Pasco.

Neither department has a policy that prevents firefighters from joining criminal gangs.

"The way it stands now without a policy, you could have a Blood, a Crip, or a member of the KKK in your department. Is that acceptable to you?" the I-Team asked Pasco County administrator Michelle Baker.

"I have to do something that is legally defensible...," Baker said. 

Baker has executive power to create policy change.

"The county did not have a policy, does not have a policy," Baker said. "We are looking to develop a policy and are having a difficult time finding such a policy in the state of Florida that we could utilize as a model."

Baker said currently she feels legally trapped and said in the meantime all they can do is monitor Capt. Buzze.  She points out throughout his nearly 20 years with the department he has never been arrested and has had good evaluations as a firefighter.

"Law enforcement deputies I spoke to say they feel this is putting their lives in danger as well as members of the public. What would you like to say to them?" the I-Team asked.

"I appreciate their perspective on that, but I have to act under the law," Baker said.

"If they feel some illegal activity has been done or that they are in danger, they should bring that forward to us, but we have received nothing to indicate that there is any immediate threat to anyones life safety as a result of his membership," Baker added.

"The Sheriff's Office has investigated for a year. They have not shut down the club, they have not arrested, they have not charged, so I have nothing by which to charge him with.  If there's a risk to public safety right now the sheriff's office needs to make that case."

Kozera says it shouldn't take an arrest to make a policy.

"Let's not shy away from it like it's not a big deal," Kozera said. "It's a very big deal!  It needs a policy. It's not you picking on motorcycle guys, it's not me picking on motorcycle guys, it's they're nationally documented by the FBI and that is for a reason. So therefore if there is no policy, a policy needs to be put in place."

Baker said it may take a change in state law in order to change county policy. She said rushing this issue could lead to expensive lawsuits.

Sheriff Chris Nocco said he will support the county any way he can and if they need help lobbying in Tallahassee he's happy to help with that as well.