Louisiana Cuts Injured Officers' Pensions In Half, Demands Repayment

HollyMatkin

Injured former law enforcement officers learned on Wednesday that their pensions would be cut in half.

New Orleans, LA – Former law enforcement officers across Louisiana who were critically injured in the line of duty received a blow on Wednesday, when they learned their disability pensions were being slashed in half, and that they would be forced to repay hundreds of thousands of dollars in funds already received.

"Unfortunately, we have to follow the law, and in following the law, sometimes it doesn't include deserving people,” said Donald Villere, Board of Trustees member for the Municipal Police Employee’s Retirement System (MPERS), according to WVUE.

The law pertaining to disability pensions was rewritten in 2003, which made full pension eligibility available to officers who lost the use of a limb after July 1, 2003.

In cases prior to that date, officers may or may not qualify for 100 percent pension, even if they were initially granted it.

“We're not talking about if someone is entitled to disability or not. It’s the 100 percent benefit and whether the accident occurred on or after July 1st, 2003,” MPERS executive director and general council Benjamin Huxen said at the meeting.

"Are you kidding me? You guys represent me,” former New Orleans Police Officer Chris Ahner told the board, as he pleaded to retain the pension he deserved. “You are forgetting that we are people. Not only are we people, but we are public servants who are sworn to protect you.”

“You guys took the 11 or so of the most severely injured in the state of Louisiana and you took out the sickles and you whacked the heads off on over half of them,” Officer Ahner told the board.

Officer Ahner was just 33 years old when he was hit by a drunk driver in the line of duty.

"I got hit by a car going 70 miles per hour, I broke my neck, my hips have been fractured, both of my legs nearly ripped completely off,” he told the board.

He was hospitalized for months, and had to force himself to learn to walk again.

The MPERS initially assured him he would receive a full disability pension for life – an assurance they rescinded in March.

Instead, the board voted to give Officer Ahner just 40 percent of his pension, and ordered him to pay back nearly $250,000 in funds he has received over the years.

At least one board member, Larry Reech, openly disagreed with the decision to slash the officers’ pensions.

"We had attorneys look at the law. He was disabled under the 100 percent. We gave it to him,” Reech explained. “Eighteen years later, we're going back and he's had what? A hundred surgeries?”

“These are the kinds of cases [where] you leave them alone,” Reech argued. “You leave those guys alone, for Christ's sake.”

Comments (22)
No. 1-22
JeffD62
JeffD62

What a bunch of CRAP! How about cutting the board members (past & present) pensions. See how they like it! I would hope that every Law Enforcement Officer, every FOP, and PBA associations across the country, who reads this, calls the state of Louisiana reps and complains about this! I know I will. It's about time that we stick together! If it can happen there, it can happen anywhere!

LEO0301
LEO0301

Current police officers need to keep this in mind when doing your job. You will be discarded like old waste if you are injured on the job and can't do the work any longer. I would like to say I'm surprised by this ruling but anymore I've learned to expect this kind of treatment of our officers.

DaChief 1
DaChief 1

Scum of the Earth !! Their $250.00 per hour attorneys should have had this pension set up per the law when it was passed !! Grandfather or sue the shit out of the state and pension board !!

LumberFlip
LumberFlip

Pure unadulterated Karma.

Hi_estComnDenomn
Hi_estComnDenomn

That's rough. Hopefully they've been working on their IRAs or 401Ks to protect themselves.

If i were them, I'd invest in some bootstraps.

Marxest
Marxest

Hilarious! In 2016, Louisiana passes that so called "Blue Lives Marrer" law making it a hate crime to target police officers. Now they about face and target certain officers wanting money back from the injured officers. Lol!!!! Is that some kind of buyers remorse?!!! I guess the money matters more. It always did when it comes down to it. That is a bitter truth that everyone has to swallow. I hope that the officers who need the support for injuries sustained on the job aren't deprived.. but this is America and all sorts of horrible things happen...

BlueMoose
BlueMoose

I would liquidate my assets and declare bankruptcy and tell the board to fuck off try and get any money out of me.

257mom
257mom

This is an outrage, and I hope this is litigated to the fullest extent, including appellate courts. This is so unfair to those who were given these pensions and this decision by the pension board must be challenged and overturned. I pray for justice for each of the officers impacted by this outrageous action..

Linda Simpson
Linda Simpson

I'm speechless but assume this is going to become more of a reality in sTrumps America where we cut everything to give tax cuts to the rich! THIS IS BULLSHIT at its worst.

jack zeller
jack zeller

This law was written in 2003 you nimwit, and has nothing to do with Trump. Strop trolling like all the rest of the screamers. This is a terrible situation but your remark is savagely shallow and unhelpful.

Propolice
Propolice

Karma is gonna bite YOU ! SICK F

NomonK
NomonK

The State could change the law by passing an emergency bill to grandfather all previous pensions into the law. This is pure BS. The VA did me the same way after my wife passed. The average JOE can't figure the VA's disability pay, so the over paid me an Now it's be taken out monthly. BASTARDS ALL

FedUpViewer
FedUpViewer

The story says "the law was changed in 2003. For those injured after 2003." Then the artist clue proceeds to say "he has been paid for 18 or so years." If this is true, he was injured in 2000. (This is 2018. So 2018 minus 18 years equals 2000.) So this man should never been one to lose his pension to begin with.

Astroserf
Astroserf

Linda, you need to step away from CNN and the Pelosi speeches and try to get some semblance of a clue before making stupid comments.

jaxholley
jaxholley

Maybe a class action suit against the board for fraud.

kwhite5
kwhite5

BS! Plain BS!

cpn300
cpn300

sorry linda---this started three years ago which a vendetta against an officer from Monroe which then drew the others into it..NOTHING TO DO WITH TRUMP !!!!

ExLeoTrucker
ExLeoTrucker

Well Linda we really wish you were speechless after that completely STUPID LIBERAL comment that has absolutely no basis in FACTS!

ksentell
ksentell

jack, hopefully You are Not that shallow or stupid...and realize that these Laws actually happened long before Trump was elected and beat the criminal Hillary.

Cmor269
Cmor269

You’re a idiot! If you want to blame any president blame the one in office in 2003. When in reality the blame falls on the shoulders of the idiots on the board who decided to cut their deserved pensions and make them pay back money they’ve already received and deserved. Being a police officer is hard enough without having to worry if you get hurt will you be covered medically and financially!


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