A group representing current and former Casper police officers is hoping for a “swift and amicable resolution” to discussions between the City of Casper and a wounded police officer over when he returns to work.
The Casper lodge of Wyoming’s Fraternal Order of Police released a statement Friday praising communication between the city and officer Jacob Carlson.
The three sentence letter states the group, which consists of current and retired police officers, supports the officer in his recovery.
“The lodge is hoping for a swift and amicable resolution to this matter,” the letter, which is dated Thursday and provided to reporters Friday, states. “We continue to hope and pray that Officer Carlson has a full recovery.”
Earlier this week, city and police officials agreed to give Carlson, who was severely injured in a May shooting, eight more weeks of paid leave.
Carlson told the Star-Tribune last week that Chief Keith McPheeters had told him to return to work in mid-August, against the recommendations of Carlson’s doctors. Carlson said the chief also told him that the department would not be able to give him a part-time job.
In an interview last week, Carlson said his doctors had told him he should be declared fully disabled.
Carlson, a 27-year-old Army veteran, was shot at least four times in a May 6 gunfight that left his assailant dead and Carlson severely injured. He required multiple surgeries and received more than a 100 units of blood and blood products. He spent a month in the hospital and is still recovering from the injuries.
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After Carlson spoke to the Star-Tribune last week, the city held two press conferences on Aug. 21 concerning the officer’s status. At the first one, Napier said Carlson was still on administrative leave and was drawing a full salary. But Fuller provided a letter to the Star-Tribune that was signed by McPheeters and stated that the police department was removing Carlson from leave and he should return to work on Aug. 20.
Henley, the city attorney, kicked Fuller out of the meeting after the two began arguing. With his attorney removed, Carlson left the press conference as well.
Later that same day, McPheeters called another conference and said he failed to effectively communicate with Carlson and that he was acting in accordance with his “perception” of what Carlson wanted and needed.
On May 6, Carlson responded to a dirt lot in east Casper to provide backup for Officer Randi Garrett, who was speaking with a man who had allowed a young child to drive a car.
After Carlson arrived, the man, 38-year-old David Wolosin, began moving away from the officers. When Carlson reached out to grab him, Wolosin pulled out a pistol and began firing. Both officers shot back, with Garret firing the shot that killed Wolosin.
Natrona County District Attorney Michael Blonigen concluded that Carlson and Garrett were fully justified in shooting at Wolosin.
Doctors at Wyoming Medical Center treated Carlson for a shattered pelvis, a severed artery in his pelvic area, infections and nerve damage. He underwent multiple surgeries and nearly died.
The FOP lodge is one of 2,200 in the nation, which consist of more than 300,000 police officers, according to the organization’s website. Carlson is a member of the FOP.