The Polk County Sheriff's Office arrested an EMT worker after she forged a physical abilities test certificate to gain a promotion.
28-year-old Kyla Anne Rivas Zehtab of Lakeland was arrested Tuesday for one count of grant theft and one count of forgery. She was employed with the Polk County Commissioners as an EMT for Polk County Fire Rescue.
Deputies say she forged a physical abilities test certificate from the Broward Fire Academy to be eligible for a firefighter promotion. The promotion would have increased her salary over $11,000 annually.
According to the affidavit, Zehtab was interested in being promoted to a Firefighter position and met all of the qualifications other than the required certification for a physical abilities test. Zehtab told her supervisor at PCFR she had taken the course two times, but failed to obtain her certificate of completion. Employees asked the Broward Fire Academy to verify her attendance and they said they had no record of her attending the training and stated the document that was sent in was altered.
Zehtab has been suspended with pay pending an internal investigation by PCFR.
"Ms. Zehtab did not meet the high standards set to become a firefighter. As a result of her actions, such conduct will not be tolerated. Therefore, we notified the Polk County Sheriff's Office and she was charged criminally. We expect nothing less than professionalism and honesty from our employees!" -Joe Halman, Jr., Deputy County Manager of Public Safety, Polk County Board of County Commissioners.
Zehtab has been booked into the Polk County jail on the above charges and is being held on no bond pending first appearance hearing.
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