ST. PAUL (AP) -- A  former St. Paul fire district chief has filed a federal lawsuit alleging the fire department's leaders interfered with the training of recruits, creating risks to public and fellow firefighters.

Jovan Palmieri was the training chief before he left the fire department last year. His lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court Monday says he spent more than three years trying to remedy the training problems and was retaliated against.
Palmieri said he observed Fire Chief Butch Inks and Assistant Chief Mike Gaede ``engage in multiple incidents of interference and obstruction in the proper and safe training'' of recruits.

Inks says the safety of firefighters and the public has always been his top priority.

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