Documents: Washington firefighters admitted forging vaccine cards to meet state mandate

Fake Vaccine Card

WENATCHEE, Wash – Two Douglas County firefighters used fake vaccination cards in order to meet a state requirement, according to public records released this week to 4 News Now.

The story broke several weeks ago about the firefighters’ attempt to pass off the fake vaccine cards. A clerk from Walgreens was implicated in the scam.

4 News Now requested documents related to the case, which were released Tuesday by Fire Chief Brian Brett.

Both firefighters have since resigned.

According to the documents, firefighters Joshua Bollinger and Seth Ellis were notified of the allegations on October 21st.

That document says Bollinger admitted, “that he had obtained a forged vaccine card from Walgreens in East Wenatchee.”

Bollinger told a co-worker he got the first shot but did not want the second.

“That crewmate told him to speak with Captain Ellis and stated that Ellis might know someone who could help him,” the pre-discipline note reads.

According to the allegations, “Ellis advised him to go see Jeff at Walgreens, East Wenatchee. Ellis had previously or was in process of procuring a forged card from this individual.”

The document says Bollinger went to Walgreens and got his card signed without getting a second vaccination.

The pre-discipline document cites the laws and policies alleged to have been broken, along with the Douglas County Fire Protection Code of Ethics.

The letter said the fire district recommends discipline up to and including termination of employment.

It’s dated October 21, 2021. Bollinger resigned six days later.

The notice of pre-discipline hearing letter for Captain Seth Ellis details the allegations against him.

The letter says that Ellis told a co-worker “he had gotten a vaccine card from a local pharmacy and but had not received the requisite vaccinations.”

That co-worker reported the information to the battalion chief and union president.

When asked, several more firefighters reported hearing Ellis make the same claims about the fake vaccination card.

In one case, firefighters said Ellis told them the pharmacist was also against the mandate and that the pharmacist “squirted the injection into the trash and placed a band-aid on Ellis’s arm” before signing the vaccination card.

When confronted by his supervisors, the letter says Ellis did not deny using a fake vaccination card; he also admitted telling Bollinger about the fake vaccination in East Wenatchee.

Ellis also resigned on October 27th.

The Wenatchee World reported earlier this month that the pharmacist was fired.

Washington lawmakers are right now considering a bill that would make presenting a false vaccination document a misdemeanor offense. Someone found guilty of selling or offering to sell a fake vaccination card could be charged with a felony.