- Associated Press - Wednesday, September 20, 2017

NEW BRITAIN, Conn. (AP) - A Connecticut fire chief will retire after being placed on paid leave following an investigation that faulted him for racial insensitivity.

New Britain Mayor Erin Stewart, a Republican, said Tuesday that she has accepted Thomas Ronalter’s offer to retire. He will stay on until Oct. 2 but the department will continue to be run by Deputy Chief Peter Margentino.

Ronalter was placed on leave last month following a report from the city that said his insensitivity worsened perceptions of racism. The investigation was prompted by his refusal to hang a photograph of the department’s first black chief on a wall of honor. Ronalter initially said he wouldn’t resign and questioned many of the findings.

In a statement, Ronalter said it was an honor to serve the city for 35 years.

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