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Former division chief sues Tri-State alleging wrongful dismissal

DARIEN – A former division chief with the Tri-State Fire Protection District has filed a lawsuit against the district alleging he was wrongfully terminated and is seeking reinstatement of his position.

David Basek filed the suit in federal court in mid August. According to the lawsuit, Basek claims that in June of 2011 he began to receive medical treatment for a heart condition, which required him to take a medical leave of absence from work through the remainder of 2011.

While receiving treatment, Basek was told that his superior was displeased about him filing a workers’ compensation claim, according to the lawsuit.

Upon returning to work in 2012, Basek said he began experiencing harassment related to his workers’ compensation claim, including comments making light of his heart condition, reads the lawsuit.

The lawsuit goes on to state that in May 2012, Basek suffered a non-workplace related injury and began a two-month leave of absence. In July 2012, Basek returned to work and discovered he had been removed from the district’s website and was no longer identified as division chief.

On Oct. 29, 2012, Basek was called into a meeting with Chief Michelle Gibson and discharged from his position as division chief, said the lawsuit.

Basek first became employed at Tri-State as a union firefighter in 1986. He was appointed division chief in 2005, according to the lawsuit.

The lawsuit filed in August is against Tri-State, its board of trustees and the board of commissioners.

Tri-State Fire Chief Michelle Gibson said in an email that the district denies the allegations in the complaint and “it intends to vigorously defend itself in court.”

To view the lawsuit in its entirety, visit

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