My Former Fellow Officer & Friend's Story

This is a friend of mines’ true story. It does not surprise me in the least as he also worked in Northlake which is located in Illinois–a very liberal state indeed. Anyway, this surprised me very much and I am wondering if it surprises anyone else? Whatever the case may be–I remember this guy saying this phrase often ;)– it is definitely something that all Police Officers can learn from.

His blog site is: http://dukesblotter.blogspot.com

A Lesson Learned – Learn From It

I am making this post not as a complaint but as a way for others to learn. This is a very important issue to everyone that wears a badge. As everyone pretty much knows my career was cut short by an accident. I had my left foot run over by one of our unmarked cars while getting into the back seat to go out on patrol. The damage done to my foot was enough to render me disabled for full duty police work. My employer has been great throughout the ordeal, so has the Workman’s Comp carrier. Basically, my case was an “it is what it is” type of situation. All the doctors agreed that I would never be able to return. I applied to the pension for a “Duty-Related Disability”. You would think, I got hurt on duty so, no problem. WRONG!!! Everyone needs to learn this important lesson:

-Just because you are ON duty when you are injured does not mean that were injured in the Line of duty. This is very important. I was awarded a “Non-Duty Related Disability” by our pension board based on this fact. There is case law to back this up, but the courts are very vague about all of it.

I will not discuss the legal issues at this time due to possible further actions being taken. I will however, provide you with links to read for yourselves this extremely important information. Everyone knows how I always looked into things when it came to labor issues, etc. I caught standing still with this one. Do not let it happen to you.

For all the younger officers out there, learn this!! Know your contract, know your rights, know the pension laws. These are the basis for your life on the job. Do not get caught standing still, like I did.

(40 ILCS 5/3‑114.1) (from Ch. 108 1/2, par. 3‑114.1)
Sec. 3‑114.1. Disability pension ‑ Line of duty.
(a) If a police officer as the result of sickness, accident or injury incurred in or resulting from the performance of an act of duty, is found to be physically or mentally disabled for service in the police department, so as to render necessary his or her suspension or retirement from the police service, the police officer shall be entitled to a disability retirement pension equal to the greatest of (1) 65% of the salary attached to the rank on the police force held by the officer at the date of suspension of duty or retirement, (2) the retirement pension that the police officer would be eligible to receive if he or she retired (but not including any automatic annual increase in that retirement pension), or (3) the pension provided under subsection (d), if applicable.
A police officer shall be considered “on duty” while on any assignment approved by the chief of the police department of the municipality he or she serves, whether the assignment is within or outside the municipality.

(40 ILCS 5/5‑113) (from Ch. 108 1/2, par. 5‑113)
Sec. 5‑113. Act of duty.
“Act of duty”: Any act of police duty inherently involving special risk, not ordinarily assumed by a citizen in the ordinary walks of life, imposed on a policeman by the statutes of this State or by the ordinances or police regulations of the city in which this Article is in effect or by a special assignment; or any act of heroism performed in the city having for its direct purpose the saving of the life or property of a person other than the policeman.
(Source: Laws 1963, p. 161.)

Some cases to look up on this:

Fedorski v. Board of Trustees of the Aurora Pension Board

White v. City of Aurora

Sarkis v. The Des Plaines Police Pension Board, et al.

Do a couple Google searches on these and you will learn a whole lot.

Good luck and BE SAFE!!!!

Duke


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