Albuquerque, NM – Nearly three years after he shot multiple times in the line of duty, Albuquerque Police Department (APD) Officer Lou Golson said he continues to battle the city and workman’s compensation for medical assistance.
“You would think the nightmare was getting shot. The actual nightmare was surviving. The total that it’s taken financially … is unreal,” Officer Golson told KRQE.
The 31-year veteran of the APD was conducting a traffic stop on Jan. 3, 2015, when he was shot four times, the Albuquerque Journal reported. Officer Golson sustained gunshot wounds to his leg and stomach, and nearly died.
Officer Golson said he had intended to go back to work as soon as possible, but that the city and workman’s compensation ultimately deprived him of that opportunity.
“Apparently it was not in the cards, because for five months when my initial medical starting becoming delayed or denied, there were things that could have been fixed that no longer can be fixed,” Officer Golson explained.
Ultimately, he was forced to retire, the officer said.
“I just could not fathom that I would be treated so poorly. Throughout our careers, we are taught, if you get hurt on the job, you’ll be taken care of. That is not the case,” Officer Golson said.
Officer Golson estimated he has paid $10,000 in medical bills out of his own pocket, simply because he tired of the constant battle to get the city and workman’s compensation to cover the expenses.
He said that he was working to obtain a lump sum, so that they can no longer dictate when he can access medical care and surgeries.
“Why does the city, in this case, have such issue taking care of their officers?” Officer Golson asked. “I mean, they’re screaming for more officers.”
A mediator has attempted to help settle the matter between the city of Albuquerque and the officer.
Recently the city offered Officer Golson just $4,000 – amounting to $20 per year – to cover his medical care, he said.
The mediator will make a decision in the matter, and if the city doesn’t agree with that conclusion, the case will go before a workman’s compensation judge.
According to KRQE, a spokesperson for Albuquerque Mayor Richard Berry’s office said that the city had already provided Officer Golson with as much money as workman’s compensation and the law would allow.