Retired Virginia officer told she owes $40K

NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) – A retired Norfolk, Virginia police officer is battling for her benefits.

Dawn Pratt’s retirement checks were coming like clockwork, but then suddenly stopped.

“I feel that my dedication for 18 and a half years meant nothing,” said Pratt. “I truly do.”

Pratt spent almost two decades with the Norfolk Police Department. She spent most of that time as a K-9 officer.

“I retired because I had to,” Pratt said.

The officer was forced to leave her dream job in 2013 due to an injury at work. On her way out, the city told her how much she would get monthly in retirement. At the same time, she was also getting a check for workers’ compensation.

In April, her retirement checks just stopped coming. She called the city to see what was happening.

“They told me the city had been overpaying me for however many years and it could have been in excess of $40,000-$45,000,” Pratt said “They did not know. I didn’t believe it because there has never been an issue with any of my checks.”

Pratt wanted to know how this happened but was running into dead ends.

“I just want some answers and if they have overpaid me, okay,” Pratt said. “Let’s get to the bottom of it. Let’s get a payment plan. Let’s have some communication.”

The former officer says if she was overpaid, she has no issue with giving back a portion of her checks — but to just cut her off is a different story. She just wants to see the documents that show that’s the case.

“I’m not just going to lay down and let them walk all over me,” Pratt added.

City officials say they can’t talk about her case because she hired an attorney, but tell 8News sister station WAVY the issue was between the pay for workers’ comp and retirement. They would not elaborate any further but say this wasn’t a widespread issue. However, they have identified almost five similar cases.

“I don’t know where to go from here,” Pratt said.

This is a developing story. Stay with 8News online and on air for the latest updates.

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