Derby alderman who’s also a New Haven firefighter charged in hit and run

New Haven

DERBY, Conn. (WTNH)–Derby city Alderman Louis Oliwa is facing criminal charges after police say he was involved in a hit and run in a city EMS truck.

Derby cops say back in June, Oliwa hit a parked car in a strip mall parking lot, then took off. No one was hurt but there was property damage, according to court records.

The news shocked neighbors around town.

“Oh my god!  That’s awful.  I don’t even know what to say,” said Lori Hassan-Lionetti.

“I think it’s unacceptable.  You have a reputation to uphold, you know,” Margaret Lepri said. 

It’s unclear if Oliwa was on duty at the time.  An eyewitness tipped off investigators.

“It’s concerning to me that he wouldn’t stand up and take responsibility for what happened,” Hassan-Lionetti told us.

Police Chief Jerry Narowski said instead of going to jail, Oliwa was given a summons which he insisted is common in these kind of cases. 

In addition to his elected duties, Oliwa is a volunteer Derby fireman and a full-time lieutenant in the New Haven Fire Department.  

The City of New Haven told News 8 in a statement, “The results of an internal inquiry in this office are that Lt. Oliwa was off-duty at the time of an alleged traffic infraction, for which he was cited, and that he was driving a City of Derby vehicle at the time of the alleged infraction.”

Derby fire leaders told us “There was incident involving one of the EMS vehicles. There’s an ongoing investigation and we’re not able to comment at this time.”

It’s not yet known if Oliwa has been placed on leave from either of his jobs with the New Haven and Derby fire departments.

Efforts to reach Oliwa were unsuccessful.


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