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New London firefighter Mayo charged with assault, breach of peace Friday night

By Joe Wojtas

Publication: theday.com

Published June 15. 2013 4:00PM   Updated June 15. 2013 11:02PM
Tim Cook/The Day file photo
In an April 24, 2012, Day file photo, Alfred Mayo attends a press conference at the Legislative Office Building in Hartford in response to the Public Safety Department's investigation and report on the evaluation process at the state fire academy in regards to Mayo's firing as a recruit for the New London Fire Department.

Montville — New London firefighter Alfred Mayo, who successfully fought his 2011 firing by the city after claiming he was discriminated against because he is black, was arrested by Montville police late Friday night for assaulting a man outside the Montville Polish Club.

Mayo, 35, of 17 Russell Road, Norwich, was charged with third-degree assault and second-degree breach of peace in connection with the 11:05 p.m. incident on Maple Avenue.

State police said Mayo is accused of punching the male victim several times. The victim suffered a head laceration and bruising to his eye and cheek. Mayo was released on a $1,000 nonsurety bond and is slated to appear in Norwich Superior Court June 27.

Mayo was fired by the city of New London in December of 2011 just days before his graduation from the state fire academy. After his termination, Mayo claimed he had been mistreated by the city and fire academy because he was black.

The city rehired him in May of 2012, after Mayor Daryl Justin Finizio said new information had come to light, including a report on the fire academy that concluded Mayo may have been treated unfairly during his training.

Mayo, the first black firefighter hired by the city since 1978, has filed an intent to sue the city. An attempt to reach Mayo at home on Saturday for comment was unsuccessful.

New London Fire Chief Henry Kydd said Saturday that per department policy that has been used when previous firefighters were arrested, Mayo has been suspended without pay pending the outcome of the court case. He said Mayo has been notified of the suspension.

“We treat every one of these incidents the same,” stressed Kydd, who added that Montville police contacted the fire department Friday night about the incident.

Finizio said he spoke with Kydd about the arrest and approved the fire chief’s recommendation to suspend Mayo.

Mayo is also expect to appear in court on June 27 to answer charges filed by state police that he failed to slow down or pull over for a stopped emergency vehicle on March 21.

j.wojtas@theday.com

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