Back on duty, officer once in coma erases doubts

By Paul Hampel, St. Louis Post-Dispatch

ALTON, MO -- After acing every physical and mental test that therapists threw at him, injured Alton police Officer Sam Riney was cleared to return to duty.

But as Riney, 27, got dressed for his first day back at work last Monday morning, he knew he still faced another test, one that was more important than those he had already passed: Would his fellow officers accept him as fully fit for duty, especially in the wake of a brain injury?

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