Fired Trooper Anthony Scott is entitled to get his job back, though at a lesser rank and salary, the State Personnel Commission said this week.
The commission's decision affirms a recommendation made by Senior Administrative Law Judge Fred Morrison after a hearing last year.
The patrol fired Scott in February after they found out he was on duty when he visited the home of his girlfriend in Pittsboro. Shortly after he arrived, the girlfriend's estranged husband showed up and threatened to kill her, Scott and himself with a gun, court records said.
Scott had left the home before the husband entered in an attempt to avoid a confrontation, his lawyer said, and did not learn of the assault until the husband left. Scott was initially demoted a rank, with his pay cut 15 percent, and reassigned to Charlotte.
Scott had appealed that punishment, which resulted in N.C. Crime Control Secretary Reuben Young reviewing the case, and determining that Scott should be fired.
The commission agreed with Morrison that Young had not followed proper personnel procedures in firing Scott. It also affirmed that the patrol was originally correct in its decision to demote and reassign Scott.
The patrol can appeal the decision to state court.