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Attorney: UC Davis Pepper-Spray Cop’s Worker’s Comp Case Difficult To Prove

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Anjali Hemphill Anjali Hemphill
Anjali Hemphill joined CBS 13 in June 2012 and she's happy to make the...
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DAVIS (CBS13) — CBS13 cameras caught him pepper-spraying protesters, and now a former UC Davis cop is asking for money.

An attorney says his case may be difficult to prove.

Melissa Brown says if John Pike is pursuing money, she believes he must have career-ending symptoms, because it’s not going to be a slam-dunk.

Nearly two years after exclusive CBS13 video showed Pike pepper-spraying protesters, the former lieutenant is looking for cash.

“These types of cases are hotly contested,” Brown said. “It’s not just an automatic thing that a worker is going to get any compensation at all.”

Brown says cases involving psychiatric injuries are pretty rare because they are so hard to proved without much, if any, evidence.

“It’s difficult to prove a case, because an injured worker has to establish—and it’s the worker’s burden to show the actual events of the employment were 51 percent the cause of the injury.”

Pike is claiming he has psychiatric injuries from the backlash he endured. After the video went viral, his personal information was posted online, with some people even threatening his life.

He’s not getting much sympathy from UC Davis students.

“I think he’s trying to find an easy way out.”

Brown says if Pike gets the payout, he wouldn’t get much.

“We aren’t looking at a lot here. He doesn’t get vocational rehab. He will get medical treatment and that’s about it.”

A long shot for a small win in a case that brought on big reaction from all around the world.

His hearing is set for Aug. 13.

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