A Brooklyn man suffering from posttraumatic stress disorder from 9/11 was awarded $20,360 by a judge after he and his Italian greyhound service dog were barred from entering a state building to claim benefits.

47-year-old Charles Romo, Jr., who is blind in one eye, registered the "doctor prescribed" service dog, as opposed to a guide dog, with the Health Department to alleviate his stress (his roommate died in the attacks), which the June 2009 incident in the lobby of 55 Hanson Street apparently seriously exacerbated. Basically Romo and his dog, Ramses, tried to enter the building and were told that it only allowed service dogs in. Romo didn't have the papers on him to prove Ramses was registered and instead fought with the guards. They demanded that he tell them what his disability was, which he refused, and one guard "claimed that Romo spat at her as the argument escalated."

Eventually Romo filled out the papers he needed before being escorted out of the building, but the damage to his fragile psyche was already done. He filed a complaint with the city Commission on Human Rights, alleging that he'd been discriminated against and flew back to Houston to visit family and recover.

"The level of emotional distress suffered by Mr. Romo, even though it was based on one instance of discrimination, is significant and an award at the high end of the range is appropriate," Administrative Law Judge Alessandra Zorgniotti ruled in Romo's favor. Though the final ruling is up to Human Rights Commissioner Patricia Gatling, Zorgniotti found that not only should the security company pay a $15,000 civil penalty to the city, it should also pay Romo $20,000 for "mental anguish" and $360 for his airfare to Houston.

But how much does Romo even need Ramses? One nosey Crown Heights neighbor tells the News that "You know how dogs suffer from separation anxiety? The dog is always in the apartment barking. He's not with the dog all the time."