Fire captain arrested on suspicion of domestic abuse

SAN DIEGO — A San Diego fire captain was released on bail Friday following his arrest on suspicion of felony domestic violence.

Steven Michaels, 53, was taken into custody late Thursday afternoon and booked on suspicion of inflicting corporal injury on a spouse or cohabitant and dissuading a witness to a crime, according to police. He was released on bail about 4 a.m., with arraignment scheduled for Aug. 8, a jail clerk said.

Details of the alleged assault were not immediately available.

Michaels has faced similar accusations previously.

At the trial last year of a man charged with stabbing two firefighters during an altercation at an East Village trolley station, a defense attorney told jurors that the fire captain — who shoved the defendant over a bench during the fracas — had faced allegations of punching his pregnant wife and kicking down a girlfriend’s door.

The lawyer blamed Michaels for instigating the fray on the transit platform at Park Boulevard and Market Street, which resulted in a nearly 24- year prison sentence for the accused assailant, despite his claim of self- defense.

A spokesman for the San Diego Fire-Rescue Department said officials with the agency had no comment on Michaels’ arrest because it qualified as a “personnel matter.”

Editor’s note: A previous version of this story included a photograph of a firefighter who was erroneously identified as Capt. Steven Michaels. We regret the error.