Firefighter who wore blackface Halloween costume returns to work, assigned to ‘light duty’

Light duty likely means more work around the office

INDIALANTIC, Fla. – A Brevard County firefighter is working for the first time since a Halloween party picture surfaced on social media.

Brevard County confirmed Monday that Jake Johnson of Brevard County Fire Rescue is back to work, but it’s not clear if he’s back to work at his fire station in Indialantic.

The county said it’s limiting his public exposure after the picture went very public.

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The county said Johnson was in the Halloween party picture with a caption calling him ‘Denzel Washington.’

After the party, Johnson went on vacation for two weeks.

The county said his time off was scheduled before the picture came out.

Asking for an update now that his vacation is over, county communication director Don Walker said in a statement,

‘’No action has been taken at this time while we continue to look into this matter. We are not putting a rush on this. However, in the meantime, he has been assigned light duty.’’

Light duty likely means more work around the office.

‘’They are hopeful that this is just going to go away,’’ South Brevard County NAACP Vice President Bennie Jackson Jr. said.

Two weeks ago, Jackson called the picture, ‘disgusting.’

After coming back to work, Jackson said the firefighter and paramedic are not being held accountable.

‘’There’s been no consequence for his actions,’’ Jackson said. ‘’That just shows that there’s no accountability when it comes to that type of a violation,’’ he said.

Johnson has not responded to our requests for his comment.

About the Author:

James joined News 6 in March 2016 as the Brevard County Reporter. His arrival was the realization of a three-year effort to return to the state where his career began. James is from Pittsburgh, PA and graduated from Penn State in 2009 with a degree in Broadcast Journalism.