Former Chicago cop sues to reverse ruling on disability payments
STAFF REPORTS August 27, 2013 12:32PM
Updated: August 27, 2013 1:30PM
A former Chicago Police officer whose disability payments were cut off in the wake of a Chicago-Sun Times investigation filed a lawsuit Monday hoping to reverse the pension board’s findings.
Charles Siedlecki filed the petition in Cook County Circuit Court against the Retirement Board of the Policemen’s Annuity and Benefit Fund.
The board cut off his disability payments in August 2012 after a series of Sun-Times stories revealed Siedlecki received more than $715,000 in disability pay over two decades — during which time he got a law degree, went to work as a lawyer and took up big-game hunting in Africa.
Siedlecki went on disability after he fell and hurt his shoulder chasing a group of teenagers while on duty in 1992, claiming the injury left him unable to safely fire his weapon and return to work as a cop, the newspaper reported.
The petition says the board did not let Siedlecki testify at the August meeting, violating him of his due process. It also claims the board’s affirmation of the decision at a separate meeting this April went against medical records and other evidence he submitted.
The petition calls the board’s decision “clearly erroneous,” and seeks to overturn it. It also asks for the three months worth of disability payments that Siedlecki would have received before retiring effective Jan. 1, 2013 — about $17,000, the Sun-Times previously reported.