Some will call it blaming the victim, but the Rogue Desk has got to ask: C.W. Jensen, are you fit to work, or aren't you?
Alert readers and TV viewers know Jensen as one of Portland's more prominent media figures: He was a Police Bureau spokesman prior to being investigated in 1999 for allegedly claiming improper reimbursement on some meals, and for allegedly instructing a subordinate to do the same.
Jensen, who declined to comment to Rogue Central, halted the investigation four years ago by going out on medical leave. He reportedly claimed that trauma from a past shooting, as well as alcohol abuse, meant that he was no longer fit to work.
Bureau insiders were skeptical and grew even more so when he became a KGW-TV reporter, a job he seemed to handle just fine.
Last September, just as Jensen's benefits were about to be cut, he said he was fit for duty and asked for his old job back. First, however, the bureau had to finish up the reimbursement investigation.
Mayor Vera Katz reportedly was leaning toward rehiring Jensen at his old rank of captain when he was interviewed by Dr. David Corey, a shrink hired by the bureau to determine whether Jensen was fit for duty. According to one source close to the bureau, some of his answers seemed to conflict with his earlier statements about his condition--causing the bureau to again lean toward firing Jensen.
Which may explain why Jensen has suddenly again decided he is not fit to work. According to Babette Heeftle, administrator with Portland's Fire and Police Disability and Retirement Fund, "Our office recently received an application for disability benefits indicating that he believes he is disabled."
Under the city's personnel rules, Jensen may now again be protected from termination--and qualify for hefty disability benefits.