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SEATTLE -- The Seattle Fire Department chief has apologized following the arrest of two off-duty firefighters suspected in attacking a homeless man in Pioneer Square.

Seattle Fire Chief Gregory Dean says firefighters are supposed to protect the public, not put them in harm's way.

Authorities say the two off-duty firefighters were walking with a woman when they saw a homeless man sleeping on a memorial for fallen firefighters.

Police say the woman yelled and kicked the man and the two firefighters joined in the attack. In an attempt to protect himself, the homeless man stabbed one of the firefighters.

The Seattle Times reportsthat a King County judge on Monday set a bail of $20,000 for 37-year-old Mia Jarvinen of Seattle.

She, along with firefighters Scott Bullene and Robert Howell, could face assault charges.

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