Pepper-Spraying Cop Seeks Worker's Comp for ‘Psychiatric Injury’

The former UC Davis police officer who gained national notoriety after he was recorded callously pepper-spraying peaceful demonstrators during the school's 2011 Occupy protests is seeking worker's compensation for "psychiatric injuries" he sustained during the incident.

The Davis Enterprise reports that John Pike will attend a settlement conference in Sacramento on August 13th, where the validity of his case will be determined.

Should no settlement be reached, an additional hearing or trial date will likely be be set.

Pike, who earned $121,680 annually as a police lieutenant, spent eight months on paid leave following the firestorm that erupted over his liberal and casual use of pepper-spray against Occupy protesters.

His employment was ultimately terminated on July 31st of last year.

"In an ideal democracy, violent suppressors of political speech are jailed and not rewarded," Bernie Goldsmith, an Occupy UC Davis-affiliated attorney told the Enterprise. "This sends a message that acts of violent political repression can be both insulated from real criminal prosecution and rewarded."

A protest has been scheduled to coincide with Pike's settlement hearing.

[photo right via AP, photo left by Louise Macabitas]