A disability? Not so fast

February 11, 2014 

Chris Coleman's mother and brother, Connie Coleman, of Chester, Ill., and Brad Coleman enter the courthouse for the first day of Chris Coleman's trial.

NEWS-DEMOCRAT FILE PHOTO — photo@bnd.com

It must be tough to be Brad Coleman. He is a prison guard in Illinois, and his brother Christopher Coleman is serving life in prison for killing his wife and their two young sons. The situation probably does weigh on Brad Coleman.

Still, his disability claim for post traumatic stress disorder deserves close scrutiny by the state.

If the claim is approved, Coleman would get about $224,000 tax-free from the state's taxpayer-subsidized retirement system. Why?

It's not that Coleman can't work. Indeed, he's working now as a police officer in Chester; the chief thinks it's safe for him to carry a gun despite the claim of PTSD. It's just that Coleman says he can't work as a prison guard any longer.

This situation sounds more like a career change than a disability. Leaving his guard job is fine. Expecting nearly a quarter of a million dollars on the way out the door seems to us a stretch.

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