NJ city seeks involuntary disability retirement for officers involved in shootings

The city council applied for involuntary disability retirement for six officers, claiming they are all unable to perform their duties


By PoliceOne Staff

HACKENSACK, N.J. — A local city council is pushing for involuntary early retirement for six police officers who were involved in shootings or fatal accidents.

According to NorthJersey.com, the council applied for involuntary disability retirement, claiming the officers are unable to perform their duties. Five out of six total applications have been approved, the last has been tabled for discussion. An involuntary retirement application for a sanitation inspector was also approved.

When the application is received by a board of trustees for the Police and Firemen's Retirement System, the members must approve the applications. Once approved, the officers become eligible for disability retirement benefits. If the trustees approved, the officers in question cannot change or cancel the date of retirement. 

Police Benevolent Association President Frank Cavallo told the publication that city hasn’t handled police matters like this in the past.

“In the past, the city has covered them and their retirement. They haven’t forced them into retirement,” he said.

Attorney Christopher Gray, who represents four out of the six officers, said that since the city has already started the process for disability retirement, they are effectively cutting off benefits to the officers. 

“It’s not very common for a municipality to cut off and stop supporting the officers that have served them,” he said.

Gray said all but one of the officers he represents have filed to receive their disability pensions. Elvin Hernandez, one of the six officers involved, said he applied as well.

 

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