Orlando Officer Shot in Head during Pulse Massacre Ordered Back to Work

first_imgThe Orlando police officer who took a bullet to the head during the Pulse nightclub terrorist attack in 2016 is in danger of losing his job. Mike Napolitano hasn’t been back to duty since the attack, and the helmet that saved his life is now on display inside the Orlando Police Department.Officer Napolitano has been out of work since he was shot in the head during the shooting three years ago.He says he received a call yesterday, though, ordering him to return to work or be fired, but he says he has not been cleared to return to duty.Orlando city policy states officers have a time limit to return to duty and Napolitano’s time has run out.He is one of about a half dozen officers who are getting letters notifying them if they don’t come back to full duty, they risk termination. Orlando Police Chief Orlando Rolon said that he made sure Napolitano got a heads-up call.Rolon said he understands that the situation is difficult, given the fact that Napolitano was shot by a terrorist, but the city policy applies to all officers.In June 2016, Omar Mateen was shot and killed by Orlando police SWAT team members after making a hole in the back of the Pulse nightclub to rescue hostages. Mateen had already killed 49 people and shot dozens more. Napolitano and others fired and Mateen fired back, hitting Napolitano in his ballistic helmet.The helmet saved his life, but that was just the beginning of what has been a long road for Napolitano.He was offered what is called an alternative duty position. Officers can usually stay there for about a year after that they must return to duty or risk being fired.Napolitano came back for a short time but left again after a doctor said he wasn’t ready for duty.It has been three years, and he still has not been medically cleared or told he was permanently not fit to return.Rolon said he doesn’t think in the end Napolitano will be fired and this could all be worked out. But it has to be done in the next few weeks, or he will be let go.That means he would not be paid until all of this works out, and there is no telling how long that could take.last_img read more