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Menino angered by Boston firefighter’s heroin arrest

Stephen Hogan

Stephen Hogan

Mayor Thomas M. Menino said Wednesday he was angered by the arrest of an on-duty Boston firefighter on drug charges, declaring the use of illegal drugs by the city’s public safety personnel is unacceptable.

“Last night when I heard about it, I was really angry about the whole situation,’’ Menino told reporters Wednesday. “A firefighter whom we entrust with public safety is out there doing drugs that are illegal in our society. We don’t tolerate that.”

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According to a police report, Stephen Hogan, 24, was arrested Tuesday night inside the firehouse at 1870 Columbus Ave. by Boston police detectives.

In their reports, police said they spotted Hogan leave the firehouse around 6 p.m. and head to a nearby Walgreens drugstore while talking on his cellphone. Hogan went into the drugstore and exited holding a small white package, police said in the report. Hogan was still talking on his cellphone when a gold Cadillac SUV pulled into the store parking lot with two people sitting in the front seat, police said.

Hogan got into the back seat of the vehicle, which left the drugstore parking lot, then stopped in front of the firehouse to let Hogan get out, police said. Police lost the Cadillac in traffic, but confronted Hogan in the firehouse.

According to police, Hogan had in his pocket a plastic bag with tan powder, which police said they suspected contained heroin. Hogan first told police he was not a drug user but was selling drugs to pay off a debt to a bookie, police said.

Pressed by police, Hogan admitted the drugs were for his personal use, the report stated. Hogan said he lied to police initially because he feared losing his job, according to the report.

“OK, I do use heroin, and I did get the bag for me,’’ police quoted Hogan as telling them in the report. “I was scared. If I admit to using, I would lose my job. I’m still on probation.’’

According to Boston city records, Hogan joined the department July 9 and was part of a group that graduated from the city firefighting academy Nov. 20. Department spokesman Steve MacDonald said Wednesday that Hogan was assigned to Engine 42. His probation was scheduled to end in July.

MacDonald declined to discuss the circumstances of Hogan’s arrest, referring questions to police. He also said the department would not comment on Hogan’s performance because Hogan resigned.

“He was arrested,’’ MacDonald said. “He resigned. He is no longer a firefighter. He doesn’t work for us anymore.’’

Hogan is the son of District Fire Chief Gerald Hogan, a man Menino said he does not know. The mayor said the fact that Hogan’s father is in the department is not relevant.

“He’s an adult,’’ Menino said. “He’s on his own. He should be accountable for his own actions. The father has nothing to do with the son.”

Hogan is scheduled to be arraigned Thursday in Roxbury Municipal Court.

John Ellement can be reached at ellement@globe.com.
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