Hartford Firefighter Arrested Over Violent Confrontation With Ranking Officer

A Hartford fire lieutenant now faces criminal charges in connection with a violent confrontation with another ranking officer.

Lt. Michael Patterson, 45, turned himself in Wednesday on a breach of peace charge stemming from an incident Aug. 14, when he allegedly got into a “physical and verbal altercation” with Capt. Thomas Dalton in front of other firefighters and civilians at a fire scene on West Morningside Street in the city’s North End, according to police.

Ten days ago, the NBC Connecticut Troubleshooters obtained a memo from Capt. Thomas Dalton to Fire Chief Carlos Huertas detailing an incident between Dalton and Patterson.

In the memo, Dalton describes being the commanding officer at the scene of the fire, when he told Patterson three times he had not yet been released from duty.

Dalton reports that Patterson advanced toward him aggressively and shouted, “Dalton, you’ll get what’s coming to you, I’ll make sure of it. I’m going to (expletive) you up.”

In the report, Dalton says Patterson threw several punches, even landing one blow in the center of his chest.

Patterson has been arrested before. Two years ago, he faced charged of threatening, breach of peace and 29 counts of risk of injury in connection with a domestic violence incident. He was suspended from duty, but the charges were ultimately dropped.

The Troubleshooters reached out to Patterson’s attorney, Rachel Baird, who says the police department refused to give her client a copy of the arrest warrant.

"There will be a lot to say about this case but until we receive a copy of the warrant, I will have no further comment except to say that Mike Patterson willingly met with the officers yesterday and that the recording of the interview will speak for itself," Baird said.

Both Patterson and Dalton remain on paid administrative leave.

"At the conclusion of our investigation I will issue any necessary discipline or other corrective action," Hartford Fire Capt. Theodore Kolosky said in a statement Wednesday. "I would like to assure the public the incident did not impact the Department’s delivery of services in any way."

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