FALL RIVER — A former firefighter in Fall River allegedly reported non-existent fires in order to steal money to use to buy drugs.

Kyle Cusick, 33, of Fall River was arraigned Monday on charges that he reported 15 false fires beginning in 2016. Cusick pleaded not guilty.

According to court documents, Cusick would call 911 and give a fake name while reporting he could see smoke but no flames at a given address.

While firefighters responded to the fake fire, Cusick would steal money from canteens and lockers at the fire station. Fall River fire stations do not have security cameras installed. The thefts were never reported to police.

A district chief and a deputy chief say Cusick was known to have a substance abuse problem, according to court documents. The deputy chief, who had known Cusick since he was a child, listened to all 15 fake fire calls and identified the caller as Cusick.

Cusick was released on personal recognizance on Monday and was ordered to stay away from fire stations and to seek help at a treatment center.

Cusick resigned from the Fall River Fire Department in January. He was a three-year veteran of the department.

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