CHICAGO (CBS) — Sadly, we hear so much about crime in Chicago – and there is always much coverage minutes and hours after gunfire erupts.
But what happens to the victims years later?READ MORE: Donald Greene Sr. Gets 2 Years In Prison For Scheme To Sell Diseased Body Parts In Brokering Scheme
CBS 2’s Jim Williams on Tuesday evening had the story of a man who was shot while at work. He lost just about everything – his car, his job – and there is still some emotional damage.
Douglas Stockstill’s story is proof unto itself that the toll of gunfire can be enormous – even if you get out of the hospital.
Nearly four years later, Stockstill walks with a limp.
“It changes your life drastically,” he said.
He hears the criminal’s voice in the West Side alley where it happened.
“He told me: ‘Give me everything.’ My hands are up,” Stockstill said.
Nearly four years later, Stockstill lives with what happened on a bitterly cold December morning.
“That’s when the gun went off – shot me in the leg,” he said.
Stockstill, who was working for AT&T, had just finished repairing a customer’s slow internet service at Central Avenue and Harrison Street in South Austin. A man came up behind him, robbed him, and fired a shot that went right through Stockstill’s thigh.
“I didn’t know he had shot me,” Stockstill said. “It was like a couple seconds later, it felt like I got hit in the leg with like a bat or something.”
Today, Stockstill is unemployed – unable to do the work he was trained to do.
“You have to have the physical ability to carry ladders, climb ladders, work on rooftops,” he said.READ MORE: Benet Academy Decides To Hire Amanda Kammes As Lacrosse Coach After Rescinding Job Offer Because She Is Married To A Woman
Financially, the fallout has been catastrophic. He can’t provide for his children.
“I had to sell my vehicles; sell some things that meant something to me,” Stockstill said.
Stockstill also lost his home, and he now sleeps on a mattress in his mother’s basement.
What’s more, he told us AT&T stopped disability payments months after shooting – after he did rehab.
“They’ve said that I’ve healed and I should be ready to come back to work,” Stockstill said.
Severe nerve damage in his leg makes that impossible, he says.
We hear Chicago’s latest shooting tally – perhaps without fully understanding that even those victims who survive gunfire are left with profound physical and psychological wounds.
Stockstill knows. He knows very well.
“I don’t wish no one to have to through what I’ve been through,” he said. “There is emotional, mental, and physical damage that you’re going to go through.”
And that damage is long-lasting.
Late Tuesday, afternoon an AT&T spokesman told us while they can’t provide details on specific employees, Stockstill’s case is under review and not yet completed:
“We offer our employees numerous benefits to assist those who are injured on the job. While we can’t provide details on specific employees, we have a thorough process to examine every claim, which is what we are doing in this case.”MORE NEWS: Boy, 15, Shot And Killed In West Chatham
A friend has also set a GoFundMe page for Stockstill, which you can find here.