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HPD Officers to Receive State Honors[6/8/2012]


BY Alex Wang [ June 07, 2012 at 15:45:56 ]

The Houston Police Department is proud to announce the State of Texas will honor three HPD officers, who along with 18 other law enforcement officers from across the state will receive the 2011 State of Texas Law Enforcement Achievement awards in a ceremony in Austin TOMORROW (Friday, June 8).

Photos of the HPD honorees are attached to this news release.


Officer Kevin S. Will

Officer Kevin S. Will, sworn in as an officer in September of 2009, was assigned to the Vehicular Crimes Division. Officer Will, 38, was killed in the line of duty on May 29, 2011 when he was struck by a drunk driver as he was investigating a hit-and-run accident in north Houston. The suspect drove around barriers and emergency vehicles protecting the scene of the accident on the freeway. As he saw the vehicle approaching, Officer Will sacrificed his own personal safety and warned the witness to jump to safety moments before Officer Will was fatally struck. It is for this act of heroism the Award of Valor is being given to Officer Kevin S. Will posthumously.


Sgt. Ora Lanette Chandler

Sergeant Ora Lanette Chandler, sworn in as an officer in May 1994, is assigned to the Homicide Division. Sergeant Chandler, who holds Texas Commission on Law Enforcement Standards and Education (TCLEOSE) Master Peace Officer and Instructor certifications, identified a need for specialized training in investigating deaths involving children. Recognizing these investigations require multi-agency cooperation, Sergeant Chandler developed a 16-hour course called, "Child Death Investigations: A Team Approach." Sergeant Chandler reached out to subject matter experts including Children's Protective Services, The Harris County District Attorney's Office, the Harris County Institute of Forensic Sciences, the Children's Assessment Center and social workers from local children's hospitals to develop this training. It is for Sergeant Ora L. Chandler's hard work and dedication to the law enforcement profession that she is awarded the State of Texas Law Enforcement Achievement Award for Professional Achievement.


Sgt. Charles K. Allbright

Sergeant Charles K. Allbright, sworn in as an officer in April 1979, is assigned to the Airport Division and holds a TCLEOSE Master Peace Officer Proficiency Certification. While on duty, Officer Allbright saw a contingency of soldiers escorting the remains of a fallen soldier from a commercial aircraft, and noticed the fallen soldier's family was not permitted to watch the escort, due to airport security restrictions. Sergeant Allbright, whose own son is in the United States Marine Corps., initiated the necessary security arrangements to alow the family members to the aircraft to accompnay the military honor guard escort. In addition, Sergeant Allbright coordinated with the Patriot Guard Riders and the HPD Motorcycle Solo Detail to ensure a proper escort would be given. Sergeant Allbright dedicated many off-duty hours to ensure the highest respect was provided to the fallen soldiers on their final arrival home and to their families. Sergeant Charles K. Allbright is awarded the State of Texas Law Enforcement Achivement Award for Public Service.

The ceremony honoring these three Houston police officers will be held TOMORROW(Friday, June 8), at 1100 Congress Avenue in the State Capitol Building, Extension Auditorium, Room E-1.004. There will be a reception following the ceremony.




The State of Texas and the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement Officer Standards and Education
2011 Law Enforcement Achievement Awards Recipients


Professional Achievement

Detective Haywood W. Sawyer, Jr. Bellmead Police Department

Peace Officer Haywood W. Sawyer, Jr. got a taste of law enforcement with a Temporary Jailer’s license with in 2006. After completion of the basic peace officer academy he joined the Bellmead Police Department in July 2009. One year later he was promoted to detective. Detective Sawyer has investigated numerous cases of sexual assault, child abuse, and assaults against children. His hard work and dedication resulted in the apprehension and successful prosecution of a number of offenders that have been removed from the community. Detective Sawyer, in conjunction with Bellmead’s K-9 unit, has been successful in the drug interdiction programs resulting in safer streets, utilizing seized funds and property for the further development of community law enforcement programs. Besides Haywood’s driving force for the betterment of the city, he assisted his agency in securing LEOSE government funds to provide needed equipment and training. It is for these reasons, going beyond the call of duty, that Detective Haywood W. Sawyer, Jr. of the Bellmead Police Department has been selected to receive the Law Enforcement Achievement Award for Professional Achievement.


Deputy Chief George D. Little Bexar Co. Constable Pct. 4

Deputy Chief George D. Little is a veteran peace officer with 19-years of service in Bexar County and currently serves with Bexar County Constable Precinct 4. He is a Certified Crime Prevention Specialist and was responsible for researching, creating and coordinating the “School-Based Law Enforcement” training program for active threats faced by school and colleges. He also created the statewide “Crime Prevention Curricula” and “Physical Security” courses. These crime prevention programs are used throughout Texas and have had a positive impact on school, home and commercial business security inspections. In collaboration with the Texas Crime Prevention Officers’ Association, Deputy Chief Little developed a comprehensive test and certification program for crime prevention. George, a former US Army Drill Sergeant and adjunct professor for the University of Maryland and Central Texas College, was credited with developing the Bexar County D.A.R.E. program. Deputy Chief George D. Little is presented the Professional Achievement award for his numerous contributions to law enforcement as a trainer and educator.


Sergeant Ora L. Chandler Houston Police Department

Sergeant Ora Lanette Chandler has been appointed with the Houston Police Department for over 18-years and holds a TCLEOSE Master Peace Officer and Instructor certifications. Sergeant Chandler is assigned to the Homicide Division, where she is responsible for supervising and conducting investigations of murders, death in custody, child deaths, kidnappings and officer involved shootings. Sergeant Chandler indentified a need for specialized training in investigating deaths involving children. Realizing that child death investigations are multi-agency endeavors, she developed a 16-hour course titled “Child Death Investigations: A Team Approach”. Sergeant Chandler reached out to subject matter experts including members from the Children Protective Services, District Attorney’s Office, Children’s Assessment Center, Harris County Institute of Forensic Sciences and social workers from the local Children’s Hospitals in the development of this specialized training. It is for Sergeant Ora L. Chandler’s exceptional hard work and dedication to the law enforcement profession that she is given the State of Texas Law Enforcement Achievement Award for Professional Achievement.


Sergeant Derek A. Prestridge Texas Department of Public Safety

Sergeant Derek A. Prestridge of the Texas Department of Public Safety has been awarded numerous TCLEOSE proficiency certificates in his 17-years of service, including the Master Peace Officer and Advanced Instructor certifications. Sergeant Prestridge excelled in his position. His devotion to duty enabled him to work tirelessly to develop the “Interdiction for Protection of Children (IPC)” program. This course provided a unique and significant contribution in the child protection field by providing information on identifying, intervening, and interdiction when obvious signs of abuse are absent. After transferring to the DPS training academy in Austin, Derek sought to collaborate with experts from the Missing Children and Fusion Center to gather data. In 2009, Sergeant Prestridge successfully coordinated the first class on Interdiction for Protection of Children. The IPC program gained recognition within the State of Texas, the United States and foreign countries. More importantly, the IPC program has brought about the rescue of numerous children who had been abused, exploited, and/or reported missing. The Law Enforcement Achievement Award for Professional Achievement is presented to Sergeant Derek A. Prestridge.


Public Service

Senior Corporal Lawrence D. Allen Dallas Police Department

Nearly 22-years with the Dallas Police Department, Senior Corporal Lawrence D. Allen transferred to the Dallas Police Department’s Traffic Section’s DWI Unit in January 2011. He holds certifications for DRE, ARIDE, Breath Test Operator and has been classified as an SFST expert witness in the Dallas County courts. Larry also holds a TCLEOSE Master Proficiency Certification. Corporal Allen has been recognized for his professionalism and dedication in providing health and safety fairs, as well as many other projects, in an effort to educate and protect the community he serves. Some of these projects include: the 2011 Dallas “Walk Like MADD” in support of Mothers’ Against Drunk Driving, Graffiti Paint-Out, annual food drives to assist the less fortunate during the holiday seasons, and Trash Bash to clean parks. Corporal Allen serves the youth in his community by making frequent presentations to the high school’s “Student’s Against Drunk Driving” program. Larry still finds time to teach Sunday school at his church and helped build homes for the disadvantaged in the Rio Grande Valley. We salute Senior Corporal Lawrence D. Allen with the Law Enforcement Achievement Award for Public Service.


Sergeant Charles K. Allbright Houston Police Department

The State of Texas Achievement Award for Public Service is given to Houston Police Department’s 33-year veteran, Sergeant Charles K. Allbright. Sergeant Allbright holds a TCLEOSE Master Peace Officer Proficiency Certification and is currently assigned to the Houston Bush Intercontinental Airport. While on duty, Charlie observed a contingency of soldiers escorting the remains of a fallen comrade off a commercial aircraft. Sergeant Allbright noted that the family was not permitted to observe the escort due to the restrictions imposed by airport security. Sergeant Allbright, whose own son is in the United States Marine Corps, initiated the necessary security arrangements to allow family members to the aircraft where they could accompany the military honor guard to escort the fallen soldier from the aircraft. Sergeant Allbright coordinated with the Patriot Guard Riders and the Houston Police Department’s Motorcycle Solo Division so that a proper escort could be given. The Houston Fire Department assigned at the airport assists with a “water cannon” salute as the fallen soldier’s plane taxis to the gate. Sergeant Allbright dedicated many off-duty hours to ensure that the highest respect was provided to fallen soldiers on their finial arrival home and to their families. The Achievement Award for Public Service is awarded to Sergeant Charles K. Allbright.


Valor

Officer Christopher Cruz Amarillo Police Department
Officer Vinilla S. King
Officer Quirino E. Mariscal
Officer Cole D. Thurman

The Amarillo Police Department’s Officers Christopher Cruz, a 3-year peace officer, both Vinilla S. King and Quirino E. Mariscal; 5-years of service, and Cole D. Thurman; 3-years service time, were dispatched on May 31, 2011, to a vehicle accident. The driver going at a high rate of speed lost control of his vehicle and slammed into a utility pole. The impact was so great that the car doors were jammed closed. The occupants seriously injured now faced death as the vehicle began to burn. Officer Cruz was the first officer to arrive and tried to remove the occupants from the flames coming from out of the engine though the dashboard. Officer Mariscal using his fire extinguisher assisted trying to keep the flames from Officer Cruz and the trapped occupants. Officers King and Thurman arrived using their extinguishers as well, as the officers tugged the jammed door wide enough to remove the male passenger. The passenger was pulled to safety and cutting off his smoldering clothes was administered first aid. The driver of the vehicle needed the “Jaws of Life” to be freed by the arriving firefighters. Officers Christopher Cruz, Vinilla S. King, Quirino E. Mariscal and Cole D. Thurman, with no regard for their own safety and teamwork efforts rescued two men from a horrific death. It is for their fearlessness and courage that the State of Texas Achievement Award for Valor is given.


Corporal David L. Tucker Kilgore Police Department

Over the span of nearly 23-years as a Texas peace officer, Corporal David L. Tucker, with the Kilgore Police Department, has earned the reputation as an officer that will go the extra mile to help a fellow officer or a citizen. On August 1, 2011, Corporal Tucker and fellow officer Dee Ann Brown were dispatched to a residence in response to a 911 call of a reported kidnapping. Both officers arrived and determined that the complainant was suffering from mental health issues and that a kidnapping had not occurred as reported. The officers were interviewing the complainant when the complainant attacked Corporal Tucker with a knife stabbing him in his left shoulder and causing David to be briefly stunned. Fearing he would lose consciousness, Corporal Tucker staggered several feet to his right and as his head cleared he observed the attacker stabbing Officer Brown. In defense of Officer Browns’ safety, as well as his own, Corporal Tucker ordered the attacker to drop the knife, which he did not do. Corporal Tucker fired one shot which ended the violent assault. Though injured himself, Corporal David L. Tucker saved the life of his fellow officer and for his courage is presented the Law Enforcement Achievement Award for Valor.


Patrol Sergeant Jason B. Boulton Lancaster Police Department
Sergeant Heath G. Crossland
Patrol Officer James T. Grimes
Patrol Officer Maeland J. James
Patrol Officer Michael H. Mayes

Sunday, June 20, 2010, is a day that the Lancaster Police Department will not soon forget as Officers Jason B. Boulton, Heath G. Crossland, Maeland J. James, James T. Grimes, and Michael H. Mayes were dispatched to a reported shooting at a local apartment complex where a man had murdered. Lancaster Police Department’s Craig L. Shaw was engaged in an exchange of gunfire with a suspect, and fatally wounded. Sergeant Crossland radioed “Officer Down” as he continued to return fire on the suspect, who was in a parked vehicle. Officers Grimes, James and Mayes moved closer to the suspect and took position near a parked car and continue to return fire on the suspect. Lieutenant Boulton offered backup as the shooting ended with the suspect being killed. The Achievement Award for Valor is given for valiant acts of bravery to Lieutenant Jason B. Boulton, who is an 18-year veteran; Sergeant Heath G. Crossland with 13-years of service; Patrol Officers Maeland J. James; 3 years service time; James T. Grimes; 2-years, and Michael H. Mayes; 6 years of service.


Officer Christopher W. Clements Lewisville Police Department
Officer Shawn M. Dority

On September 24, 2011, Officer Christopher W. Clements, a 7-year veteran with the Lewisville Police Department, stopped the driver of a vehicle suspected of driving while intoxicated. The violator refused to exit the vehicle and fled the scene with Officer Clements in pursuit. Detective Shawn Dority, a five-year peace officer, joined the low speed pursuit into a residential area. The suspect exited the vehicle and immediately began firing on Officer Clements. Officers Clements and Dority returned fire striking the suspect multiple times. Both officers apprehended the suspect and attended to the suspect’s medical needs. It is for their fearlessness of nerve and support of each other in the line of fire that no lives were lost. The State of Texas Achievement Award for Valor honor is given to Officer Christopher W. Clements and Detective Shawn M. Dority.
Officer Rocky W. Carrell Sam Houston State Univ. Police Dept.

Officer Rocky W. Carrell with just four years of service as a peace officer and appointed with the Sam Houston State University Police Department responded to a Walker County Communication Center dispatch broadcast for a reported “Runaway Vehicle in Progress.” The Ford Expedition was traveling toward the City of Huntsville at approximately 60-miles per hour and was experiencing a malfunction with the accelerator and cruise control. Officer Carrell could see the driver frantically waving his arms and pleading for help. Officer Carrell had a short window of opportunity to disable the runaway vehicle as it was approaching the downtown area and had already sped through intersections. Officer Carrell maneuvered his patrol unit to the front of the Expedition, decreased his speed, and waited for the impact. Once contact was made with the speeding vehicle, Rocky applied full brake pressure and cautiously maneuvered the vehicle to a safe and complete stop. Officer Carrell’s quick response and critical thinking brought a dangerous situation to a safe ending on that July 30, 2011 day. The Law Enforcement Achievement Award for Valor is presented to Officer Rocky W. Carrell for placing his life in danger to save and protect the lives of others in the community which he serves.


Corporal Darrell W. Campbell Snyder Police Department
Patrol Officer Enis Lee Ortiz

A 12-year peace officer appointed with the Snyder Police Department, Corporal Darrell W. Campbell’s regular shift had been successfully completed, but Corporal Campbell went beyond his assigned duties when he volunteered to stay late due to a shortage of staff. This selfless decision and display of professionalism changed his life forever. On July 12, 2011, Corporal Campbell and Patrol Officer Enis Lee Ortiz, a 14-year peace officer, responded to a call of “shots fired.” When Officers Campbell and Ortiz arrived, they found a man in his front yard drinking beer and arguing with his wife. Without warning, the suspect began shooting, striking Corporal Campbell in the head and critically wounding him. The gunman then began firing at Officer Ortiz who returned fire, striking and killing the suspect. Officer Campbell survived his wounds and is recovering from his injury. Today we honor Corporal Darrell W. Campbell and Patrol Officer Enis Lee Ortiz with the Law Enforcement Achievement Award for Valor.


Patrol Officer Paul B. Brantly South Houston Police Department

On the afternoon of September 9, 2011, off-duty South Houston Police Department’s Patrol Officer Paul B. Brantly was purchasing gas for this personal vehicle and noticed the gas pump was inoperable. As Paul, an 8-year peace officer, approached the business to check on the status of the gas pump, a gun-shot victim holding his chest exit the business and collapsed in front of him. Following the fallen victim was the armed perpetrator of an “Aggravated Robbery” that was in progress. As the gunman began yelling and pointing his pistol at Officer Brantly, Brantly drew his duty weapon and quickly responded to the assailant giving verbal commands and firing his weapon to protect the lives of innocent bystanders on the scene as well as ensuring his personal safety. The perpetrator fled the business with Officer Brantly in pursuit. The exchange of gunfire continued until Officer Brantly returned fire, fatally striking the gunman. The two gun-shot victims wounded at the gas station received prompt medical attention and survived their injuries. It is for acting with great courage in the face of life-threatening danger that South Houston Police Department’s Patrol Officer Paul B. Brantly is awarded the State of Texas Achievement Award for Valor.

Sergeant Justin B. Royall Washington County Sheriff’s Office

Washington County Sheriff’s Deputy Justin B. Royall is a 10-year peace officer and holds a TCLEOSE Jailer’s license for 9-years. On May 24, 2011, Sergeant Justin B. Royall, was dispatched to a residence where it was discovered that a mental health patient possessed a weapon and was threatening others. A family member was also inside the residence. As uniformed officers approached the suspect’s front door they observed the suspect inside waving his arms and brandishing a weapon. The suspect pointed the weapon at one of the officers and both officers immediately took cover. The suspect continued pointing the weapon at the officers. Fearing for the safety of his fellow officer, Sergeant Royall fired his service weapon, ending the deadly threat. It is for the clear thinking and actions that saved the lives of his fellow officers that the Achievement Award for Valor is given to Sergeant Justin Banks Royall.


Valor-Posthumous

Officer Kevin S. Will Houston Police Department

Officer Kevin S. Will was 38 years old and had served two years and 3 months with the Houston Police Department when he was struck and killed by a drunk driver on May 29, 2011. Officer Will was interviewing a witness, while investigating a hit and run accident. A drunk driver drove around barriers and emergency vehicles that were protecting the scene of the accident on the freeway. Upon observing the approaching vehicle, Officer Will, at the sacrifice of his personal safety, and ultimately his life, warned the witness to jump to safety moments before Kevin was struck. The witness credits Officer Will with saving his life with his words of warning. It is for Houston Police Officer Kevin S. Will’s heroism and giving his very life that the State of Texas Achievement Award for Valor is given posthumously.


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