Retired firefighter waives hearing on assault charge
Published: Thursday, August 16, 2012, 4:38 p.m.
Updated: Thursday, August 16, 2012
A retired Pittsburgh fire chief waived his right to a preliminary hearing Thursday on a charge related to a fight he had with his girlfriend.
James Washabaugh, 54, a 26-year veteran of the fire department, was drunk and screaming obscenities when he showed up about 1 a.m. on Aug. 6 at the Centre Avenue apartment he once shared with his girlfriend, Camala Davis, 41, court records show. The commotion awoke Davis, who came out of her bedroom and asked Washabaugh to leave. Police said Washabaugh pushed her against a wall and threw her to the floor twice.
Washabaugh, who was on unpaid administrative leave from his job as battalion chief at the city's East Liberty fire station, submitted retirement paperwork last week effective Aug. 3. His retirement means he will not face a city disciplinary board and may be eligible to receive his pension even if he's found guilty of one count of simple assault. This was Washabaugh's third assault charge in four years.
In June 2008, officials placed Washabaugh on paid administrative leave after city police charged him with simple assault for another dispute with Davis. Three weeks later, Sewickley police also charged him with simple assault. Details of that incident were not available. Charges in both cases were dropped.
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