GULFPORT, Fla. -- A St. Petersburg firefighter was arrested after police say he and a woman were caught having sex near a public park.

Gulfport police say a witness saw Penny Snoots, 56, giving oral sex to Thomas Lewis, 58, in the middle of the road near Veteran's Park in Gulfport. Police said the witness then saw the two having sex on the hood of a vehicle.

When an officer pulled up to where the two were, the officer reported seeing Snoots walk away from Lewis while pulling up her pants.

Snoots and Lewis were charged with engaging in oral sex and sexual intercourse in a public place or open to the view of others.

St. Petersburg Fire Rescue said Lewis has been with the department for 34 years. He's now on paid leave pending the outcome of the investigation.

"The behavior, while off duty, and subsequent arrest of Lt. Lewis goes against our very character of public service. Our most valued asset is the public trust. There is a higher standard that which we are held, on and off duty," Fire Rescue officials said.

"Actions such as those noted in the arrest report are unacceptable by any member of St. Petersburg Fire Rescue, especially by a person in a long-held position of leadership as in this case. St. Petersburg Fire Administration is doing a thorough investigation into the incident and Lt. Lewis will face professional consequences pending the investigation. The Fire Chief will determine the appropriate level of discipline and administer such."

Snoots and Lewis have bonded out of jail.

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