Helena, MT -

A state judge has denied disability benefits to a former Glacier County undersheriff who argued post-traumatic stress disorder from his 15 years as a deputy and coroner led to the drug abuse that cost him his job.

Jeff Fauque was charged in October 2010 with entering a house to steal prescription narcotics. He pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges and surrendered his law enforcement certifications.

The Montana Public Employees Retirement Board twice denied his claim for disability benefits. Fauque went to court in February, saying the board's finding was "erroneous." He argued his opiate addiction was an attempt to self-medicate the symptoms of PTSD.

The Independent Record reports District Judge Mike Menahan rejected Fauque's claim in a Sept. 23 ruling.