[UPDATED with Conviction:] John Hines, Long Beach Fire Captain, Guilty of DUI Hit and Run of Cyclist

UPDATE, SEPT. 6, 2:59 P.M.: Long Beach Fire Department Capt. John Hines pleaded guilty today to severely injuring a cyclist in a mid-day hit-and-run crash while driving with a blood alcohol level of .24 percent, three times the legal limit. The 38-year-old Huntington Beach resident accepted a court offer to plead guilty to various felony charges and undergo 90 days of evaluation at a state prison to determine his fitness to serve time there. He's facing a sentence ranging from probation to up to six years behind bars at his Dec. 2 sentencing in Santa Ana.

Read to last page of post for latest update.

ORIGINAL POST, APRIL 6, 2:46 P.M.: A Chevy pickup truck swerved into a bike lane in Seal Beach Friday afternoon, striking a bicyclist. The truck driver took off, and witnesses gave chase. The truck was followed to a home in Huntington Beach, and the Seal Beach police later arrived to arrest the man who lives there.

He has been identified as Captain John Hines of the Long Beach Fire Department. The 38-year-old has been charged with felony driving under the influence and felony hit and run. He was jailed but later released after making his $50,000 bail. The Seal Beach Police Department received the call just after 1:30 p.m. on Friday for the accident on Westminster Avenue east of Bolsa Chica. Witnesses told officers the Chevy was traveling about 60 mph east on Westminster before swerving into the bike.

The unidentified bicyclist was thrown over the front of his ride before landing on the dirt side of the road. He was later taken to a local hospital and treated for major head trauma.

Hines hails from a firefighting family. His father, Bob Hines, is a retired Long Beach fire captain, and his uncle, Charlie Hines, retired as the department's chief before becoming fire chief in San Luis Obispo.

The Hines Family Sweet Heat Rub is featured on the Firehousechefs.com, which quotes Capt. John Hines saying, "Throughout the years, my family has always had the passion for good cooking and incorporating lots of flavors. We always have shared our firehouse recipes. That is why you get the best of both worlds: heat and sweetness!"

Long Beach Fire's administrative bureau and the city's Human Resources Department are investigating the incident, according to a Gazettes.com report.

UPDATE, APRIL 7, 5:44 P.M.: Firehousechefs.com demanded the Weekly take down from this post what the site's maintainers claim was a copyrighted photo of a jar of Hines Family Sweet Heat Rub.

Firehouse chefs essentially put it this way: A jar of Hines Family Sweet Heat Rub has nothing to do with the allegedly stinking-drunk fire official.

Rather than argue on fair-use grounds for items of news interest (as the Orange County Register did when it recently stole a photo off the Weekly site without the courtesy of a credit), we decided to comply because we're fat and lazy from our lunch of Cappy McGee's Four-Alarm Fire Chili and Franks.

Sponsor Content

Now Trending

From the Vault