A fired Harmony Township police officer is claiming discrimination because he is an alcoholic and suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder as a result of another officer’s shooting while he himself was off duty.

Jason Vular, 41, filed a federal lawsuit late last year against the township, which fired him shortly after he was arrested for drunken driving by Pittsburgh police on May 27, 2017. Vular, who was a sergeant at the time, joined the department part-time in 2004 and became a full-timer in 2007.

Vular said he suffered disability discrimination in that he has been diagnosed with “alcohol dependency disorder,” depression, anxiety and compounded PTSD and that township officials were aware of the protected issues.

Vular also claimed he was retaliated against because of his support of former officer Alan Loskoch, 41, who was shot in the line of duty on Oct. 28, 2015. Earl L. Hollins of Aliquippa was convicted of the crime in 2017.

Vular’s lawsuit goes into considerable detail about his alleged support, which included his work as the department’s union representative. He claims he opposed the township’s decision to terminate Loskoch’s employment and opposed its decision to prohibit Loskoch from collecting retirement benefits.

Vular also claims that township commissioners wanted to fire Loskoch so he couldn’t retire and collect a township pension. Vular claimed Commissioner Chairman Glenn Angus offered to promote him if he would file charges against Loskoch, alleging he’d threatened to assault or kill Angus. Vular said he refused because Angus would not put his claims in writing.

Loskoch, who was shot in the chest while wearing a Kevlar vest, recovered physically from the injury. But he suffered partial hearing loss as a result of returning fire from inside his vehicle. He claimed the township failed to accommodate his disability, wrongfully discharged him from his position and allowed harassment and a hostile work environment, and forced him into retirement.

Loskoch settled a lawsuit with the township in October and now receives medical benefits. He currently is working for the U.S. Post Office.

When asked about Vular’s lawsuit, Loskoch reacted in anger, claiming Vular is lying.

“What he’s saying is bullshit. He did everything but support me,” Loskoch said.

“I don’t know where he’s getting this. He’s one of the ones I was making complaints against. … Vular was the one who caused the problems for me. Everyone will see when I give my deposition.”

Loskoch was irate at Vular’s claims to be suffering PTSD from his shooting. Loskoch described being berated when he approached department leadership about problems he was having sleeping after being shot.

“Vular goes to me, ‘What are you, a pussy? Welcome to law enforcement.’ He belittled me … Now he’s filing a lawsuit claiming he has PTSD from the incident? He wasn’t even on duty when I was shot.”

Loskoch said he would be willing to testify as a defense witness for the township even though he remains extremely angry at officials for the way he was treated.

Township Solicitor Richard Start didn’t return a phone call seeking comment. Angus said he had seen the lawsuit, but couldn’t comment on current litigation.

BeaverCountian.com’s John Paul contributed to this report.

See Also:

In-Depth: Long After The Shots Were Fired – An Officer In Crisis

Lori Boone
Lori Boone (DeLauter) has more than 20 years of experience in investigative and community journalism. She’s won more than a dozen regional, state and national journalism awards.

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Little Jimmy
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Little Jimmy

There are some really fuck up people in law enforcement in this little Po-dunk county of ours!
From the DA all the way down to dog catcher.

Ricimer
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Ricimer

Only in Beaver County.

Brownie
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Brownie

Another police department that shouldn’t even be a department. This guy did nothing when he was there and is just looking for a payout.

Raven
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Raven

Well, Mr. Policeman, you have just tried to create a “Get Out of Jail Free” card for yourself and the yearly hundreds of other DUI’s in this County who feed the million-dollar DUI cottage industry at the Courthouse. Whip out the old DSM-V for an excuse. Find a sympathetic shrink. It won’t work. Maybe the Tequila Cowboy in Pittsburgh is not the best place to seek therapy. Maybe driving in to Pittsburgh, and back, at night, is not the best choice, if you are tipsy. Maybe the next time you pull someone over for a suspected DUI you will not yell, berate and screw them up, down and sideways and remind them that they are the scum of the Earth. Sorry, my friend. You are just a generic, run-of-the-mill drunk, who played bar roulette and bumper cars in Pittsburgh and got caught doing it. Own up to it, pay your two or three thousands in fines, go to classes and counseling with the rest of the drunks, man up, and call it a day.

Accordingtome
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Accordingtome

So if Mr. Vular was just an average citizen who submitted an application for a concealed carry permit and honestly answered the questions related to mental illness and substance abuse what do you think the chances are that it would be approved? Petty much exactly ZERO.

If you can’t qualify for a concealed carry permit you aren’t qualified to be a law enforcement officer. Not every condition is “protected” for every profession. Do you think an air traffic controller with uncontrolled anxiety is “protected?” Ummm, no. There is a minimum required fitness for duty in this particular position and he doesn’t meet it.

If he’s claiming his depression and alcohol dependency are the result of his PTSD then that is a workers compensation issue and not a disability issue.

My advice to Mr. Vular is to stop playing your little lawsuit games, cut your losses, put your ass in rehab and get a job at KFC where you can make $12 an hour if you can manage to show up sober for work.

daedalus
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daedalus

“My advice to Mr. Vular is to stop playing your little lawsuit games, cut your losses, put your ass in rehab and get a job at KFC where you can make $12 an hour if you can manage to show up sober for work.”

$12/hr.? I think that’s actually a raise from what Harmony Township pays their cops.

You gotta be a first-class dickhead to be able to convince Loskoch to come out of retirement and help the township that so royally screwed him over by testifying against you.

Accordingtome
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Accordingtome

Precisely.