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  • Writer's pictureBill Raines

No Salary Ordinances in place for police officers injured in the line of duty

LAWRENCE COUNTY - FEBRUARY 10, 2023 - Lawrence County has not faced this issue for almost 28 years ago when former Bedford Police Officer David Walker was shot in the line of duty.

Both police officers Mitchell Police Officers Christian Anderson and Lawrence County Deputy Joshua Rhoades are both released from the hospital and recovering.

This comes following when both officers were shot during a traffic stop on Indiana State Road 37 north of Mitchell.

Lawrence County Zephyr has been researching whether police officers injured in the line of duty taken care of and how they are paid while they are off recovering.

According to Lawrence County Sheriff Greg Day " All medical expenses will be covered by workman's compensation, does not cost the officer personally. As for the time off for recovery, there is a short-term disability and at this time still trying I am trying to find out more information in a case such as this,"

The City of Mitchell is still in the process of researching on how a police officer's wages are covered while they are off work, while injured in the line of duty.

Both Lawrence County and Mitchell have short-term disability available to its employees, and long-term disability is available to all employees.

There is no salary ordinance in place at either unit of government, for either the Lawrence County or City of Mitchell to address situations for the police officers who are injured in the line of duty.

At the present time the Spring Mill FOP #172 is currently raising money for the two officers.

" There are many ways we are helping these officers. We are helping them financially and any money raised will be given to both officers. We are supporting their families, and anything that workman's compensation and insurance does not cover," in a statement released by the Spring Mill FOP #172.

In January 2023 there were a total of 34 officers shot in the line of duty. In the year 2022 as of December there were 323 officers shot or killed in the line of duty. A total of 231 Line of Duty Deaths in the United States, four of those in the State of Indiana.

A total of 64 police officers were shot and killed in the line of duty in 2022 according to a preliminary report released Wednesday from the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund. The figure is below the number of firearms deaths 50 years ago, but the same statistics as 2021 which shows an increase in the number of officer deaths in more recent history.

From 2010 - 2020 an average of 53 officers were killed each year in firearms related incidents. The increase of 64 deaths by gunfire in 2022 was an increase of 21 percent over the average almost a decade ago.

This report only focused on gun related deaths, however there was many other line of duty deaths causes listed in 2022. In 2022, six were killed while making traffic stops.

Both departments thanked the community, business and organizations for their continued support during this difficult situation and support of the officers and their families.

Make sure any donations given to fundraisers in honor of these two officers are properly vetted and researched. Contact the Spring Mill FOP #172 if you have questions regarding their fundraising efforts.

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