Firefighter Capt. Lyle Thomson pulled over a suspected drunken driver last Sunday afternoon while on duty as a police officer.
During the traffic stop, Thomson searched the suspect's car and found a cache of fake Social Security and green cards as well as instruments to create forged documents.Not bad police work for a fire captain.
Orem Police Lt. Bob Connor said the arrest further validates the department's cross-training program, through which public safety officials are taught skills that make them more versatile. Thomson is one of 25 firefighters in Orem who moonlight as a police officer. By the same token, 41 police officers in the department also serve as firefighters.
"This re-emphasizes the point of cross-training," said Connor. "(Thomson) was able to use the skills that he's learned and we were able to open a can of worms because of it."
Connor added that incidents involving suspects in possession of fraudulent identification are "becoming more and more prevalent." Federal officers are now investigating the case.
Because of the general increase in crime in the area, Connor said it is essential that officers are trained to deal with a larger array of public safety issues.
The department launched the cross-training program in 1981.