Judge denies work comp claim by ex-Orlando cop with PTSD

Last Updated: Friday, January 12, 2018, 6:17 PM EST

A former Orlando police officer and Pulse nightclub shooting first responder who had sued his former employer has been denied worker’s compensation by a judge.

Judge Neal Pitts ruled against Gerry Realin in a worker's compensation claim seeking payment for lost time and wages. Realin was part of a small Hazmat team who pulled bodies from Pulse in the hours after the June 2016 attack. He was soon diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder.

Attorney Geoff Bichler and Realin argued that the former officer developed hypertension as a result of his mental nervous injury.

But Pitts noted that the hypertension did not occur at the same time as Realin's PTSD, and under current statute, he cannot be provided worker's compensation for it.

Realin was awarded full, permanent disability benefits by an Orlando pension board in July.

In a separate lawsuit, he has sued the city of Orlando and the Orlando Police Department, saying he was retaliated against and harassed after his PTSD diagnosis. He says OPD ignored federal safety procedures during cleanup of the incident.

Realin will be allowed to appeal the worker's compensation claim decision.