stormy Posted July 23, 2008 Report Share Posted July 23, 2008 She is giving the band a bad name and I can't believe she would go to this extreme to lie about having it. See article; Surgery in Mexico Nelson, 38, worked as a Portland school police officer for 81/2 years before the unit merged with Portland police in 2001. In July 2006, she was at the East Precinct when she and a fellow officer were talking in the locker room about weight-loss surgery. Nelson, then weighing 238 pounds, said she had tried many diet plans, a personal trainer, but nothing seemed to work. Nelson says she learned about a lap band procedure from a fellow officer, who also wanted to lose weight. Nelson says her health care provider wouldn't have approved the procedure. Instead, she and the other officer found a doctor in Mexico, where the surgery was cheaper. The surgery is a laparoscopic procedure that places a silicone belt around the top of the stomach to create a small pouch, helping the patient control hunger and feel full. On Aug. 17, 2006, Nelson and another officer flew together to Monterrey, Mexico. Both underwent the surgery the following day and flew back three days later. By mid-September, Nelson developed serious complications. Tufts of her hair were falling out. She couldn't hold down any food or liquids. She had dropped from 238 to 180 pounds in less than a month. On Sept. 21, 2006, she went to the Kaiser Permanente emergency room. She was placed on IV, given pain medication and run through multiple tests. The prognosis: She needed to have the lap band removed or she could die. From Sept. 21 through Sept. 26, Nelson burned through her sick time and vacation time, making numerous trips to the hospital. Her doctor in Mexico suggested she return and he'd remove the band, with no extra cost. She decided to return to Mexico. Before her trip, an East Precinct sergeant recommended Nelson apply to the contributions committee for financial help and to talk to another officer about seeking a donation from other officers for catastrophic leave because she had no sick leave or vacation time left. Nelson lied to her sergeant and other officers, telling them she was having gallbladder problems and needed emergency surgery in Texas. If she had told the truth, Nelson contends, "it would have gotten around all of East Precinct and all around the bureau." Nelson said she didn't even share her predicament with her children, a son, 18, and daughter, 8. Five months later, a complaint from another officer who knew the real reason for Nelson's trip to Mexico sparked the criminal investigation. Prosecutor Chuck French found no criminal wrongdoing. He said there was no "substantive consideration" given to her request and the money was simply approved with no documentation. Nelson agreed to pay the $1,000 back to the special contributions fund. Mayor signs letter Yet, an internal affairs investigation proceeded. On March 20, 2008,Sizer sent Nelson a letter, proposing her termination. She cited violations of the truthfulness directive, "theft by deception," and unprofessional conduct. Mayor Tom Potter signed it. "Trust and honesty are critical to good police work," the chief wrote. "You knowingly misrepresented your reason for requesting funds from the PPSCC when you simply could have given the correct reason and asked that the information be kept confidential." Union leaders accompanied Nelson to contest the firing, but the chief apparently was not persuaded. Nelson says she's awaiting her final termination letter. "I didn't deliberately lie to get the money. I didn't even know about the fund," Nelson said. She said she was untruthful with other officers because she feared a backlash. "I didn't want them to think any less of me or think I couldn't control my eating, and I didn't want to be made fun of. That played a big role," she said. "Nothing stays confidential there." Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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