Hartford Courant Reports Man Who Made False Fire Radio Calls Sent to Prison

A Massachusetts man who made a series of phony radio calls on frequencies used by Litchfield County fire departments and ambulance crews was sentenced Monday to 30 months in prison.  Adam Perrelli, 36, who has been jailed since his arrest April 6, 2014, pleaded guilty to falsely reporting an incident and tampering with evidence, according to a court clerk. His sentence is five years in prison, suspended after he serves 30 months, and three years of probation.

Perrelli admitted to state police that he made the radio calls in December 2013 and January 2014 that interfered with fire and ambulance dispatching. The broadcasts began Christmas Day and staff at Litchfield County Dispatch knew they were dealing with a poseur. The agency provides fire and ambulance dispatching to 20 northwest Connecticut towns.

The transmissions continued, with the man on the other end of the radio identifying himself at different times as a Sharon firefighter, a Watertown firefighter, a Sheffield, Mass., firefighter and a Litchfield firefighter. He caused ambulances to be sent to nonexistent medical emergencies and tried to interfere with firefighters responding to real calls.

The phony transmissions ended Jan. 6, but state police continued to investigate. Police received several calls from people who identified the radio voice as Perrelli’s. Tipsters also told state police that Perrelli had two-way radios and one told police that she saw Perrelli throw one into a trash bin at a VFW post in Great Barrington, Mass.

The trash bin was empty when state troopers got there, but the owner of the trash collection company told them he had the load from the container still on his truck. They found the radio after picking through the garbage in the truck.

Several people also told police that Perrelli had boasted about making the transmission.

The warrant for his arrest described Perrelli as someone who wanted desperately to be a firefighter, but who failed to gain certification in Connecticut and was rejected from joining the Great Barrington Fire Department.