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Long way back to normal

Original article appeared on Star Tribune.com on Sunday, Sep. 30, 2007. Written by Curt Brown.

Earlier this month, a court ruled in favor of Golden Valley man, Al Hixon, who was wrongfully arrested and beaten by the police. He received a settlement of $778,000 for the pain that the whole situation has caused him. But even though trail is over, he is still having a ton of difficulty getting on with his life.

Hixon was once a very joyful and friendly man. But the way the police treated him and that whole situation has caused him severe post-tramatic stress syndrome and depression. He spends a lot of time in bed, and doesn't participate in family events like he used to. The trauma that he experienced has caused him to only focus on the event. He ends up sitting in a chair for hours on end reliving the day of his arrest over and over again.

Thankfully, he is beginning to get help. His wife described his healing process as beginning to go from a crawl to a shuffle. He has gotten a lot of encouragement from friends and neighbors to go and seek professional help. So finally, he has begun to go to mental health professionals. He still takes antidepressants and visits the psychiatrists office.

He has been going up and down in his recovery process, but his friends are very thankful that he even has some good days. He still will not drive the Jaguar which caused him to be at that gas station two years ago, but with time perhaps the healing will allow him to overcome that fear as well.