DOWNTOWN CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - A lien by the Ohio Bureau of Workers Compensation on death benefits for Cleveland Police Officer David Fahey will be lifted after a Cleveland 19 investigation.
Reporter Paul Orlousky has been working to get answers for a couple of days now for Fahey's family.
Fahey was killed when hit by a fleeing driver on Interstate 90 in January. The BWC put a lien on an insurance payout, saying, it is owed $9,000 of that money to reimburse Cleveland for money paid for Fahey's medical care.
So far, the BWC has lowered its demand for $9,000 from Fahey's payout to $2,000. And after Cleveland 19's calls the agency agreed to release the lien so that the benefit can be paid.
But it still demands the $2,000. This puzzles Fahey's mother Jackie Ketterer.
"(The insurance companies) were willing to settle with us because part of his policy, you know, David, they agreed that uninsured motorist was part of his policy," she said.
After Fahey was killed on the highway, his insurance company and the bond company for Israel Alvarez, the man who hit him, were quick to settle. But a check never came, when Fahey's mother asked about it she got a big surprise -- the Workers Comp lien for the medical costs.
She recalls the conversation, remembering: "I just need to know why there is a lien and he said the City of Cleveland is owed that money. But I said David was working for them. He was performing his duty for them when he got killed, why are you forcing this money and this lien on there?"
She says she was told: "Well we have to, the city will be very upset if we don't get that money for them."
The City of Cleveland denies it is pushing for the money. But there is one fact that might break the logjam -- when the money is collected, it will come back to the city. So the question is, will Cleveland actually keep the money?
Cleveland police union president Steve Loomis has broached the topic with city leaders.
"We're hopeful that the city is going to reach out to Workers Comp and be helpful in resolving this situation," he said.
Ohio Assembly Member Tom Patton is fighting this last part of the battle in Columbus. A partial answer so far. Cleveland 19 will stay on the case.