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Police employees recognized

Chief Sam Williams received an award for bravery for talking a mentally disturbed man from shooting himself after an extensive manhunt all over the north side of town through many backyards and streets.Buy Photo
Chief Sam Williams received an award for bravery for talking a mentally disturbed man from shooting himself after an extensive manhunt all over the north side of town through many backyards and streets.

During the same Rotary Club banquet at the Maumelle Country Club last Friday evening where firefighters were recognized, so were the Maumelle police officers and staff members. In fact, 51 different awards were handed out to police department staff.

Chief Sam Williams presented Unit Citation’s to all of the officers who participated in the school bomb threats last fall and became so efficient at checking the schools and also solving the question of who initiated the false threats. All but one of the cases has been cleared he said. Members recognized included:

Lt. Greg McPhail, who Williams said recently retired after an outstanding career, Lt. Jim Hansard, Sgt. John Thomas, Sgt. Dustin Ivey, Sgt. Dave Collins, Sgt. Chris Lester, Sgt. Cory Pickard, Cpl. Shannon Giompoletti, Cpl. Debra Bagley, Cpl. Joseph Poole, Ofc. Greg Roussie, Ofc. Allison Hicks, Ofc. Sterling Pruitt, Det. Eli Keller, Det. Justin Ferguson, Communications. Supervisor Tanya Gotcher and Dispatcher Matt Talley.

Other Unit Citation’s were issued to: Cpl. Shannon Giompoletti and Det. Eli Keller.

Unit Citation: Sgt. Cory Pickard, Cpl. Joseph Poole, Ofc. Chris Stroud, Det. Eli Keller and Det. Justin Ferguson.

Unit Citation: Lt. Greg McPhail, Sgt. Chris Lester, Det. Chase Campbell and Sgt. Dustin Ivey.

Unit Citation: Sgt. Dave Collins, Sgt. Cory Pickard, Cpl. Joseph Poole, Ofc. Justin Woods, Ofc. Sterling Pruitt and Det. Eli Keller.

Unit Citation: Tanya Gotcher, Matt Talley, Michael Riggan, Todd Conley, Deric Danvenport, Maranda Tyra and Zach Lyons.

Williams also recognized three officers for a Gallantry Star Award along with their Unit Citation to:

Ofc. Jeremy Newlin, Cpl. Shannon Giompoletti and Det. Eli Keller.

Individual Achievement Award: Todd Conley.

Individual Achievement Award: Cpl. Debra Bagley.

Rookie of the Year honors went to Ofc. Sterling Pruitt.

The Jim Masters Citizen of the Year for 2012 was given to Roger Frangieh, for his outstanding support of the department including taking a portrait of the entire Maumelle Police Department staff, printing a large copy and framing it for display at the department.

Civilian Employee of the Year honors went to Kristina Kryzhanovska who Williams said organized a food drive last fall that donated 600 pounds of food to area churches for the needy.

Officer of the Year

Detective Chase Campbell was named officer of the year for his outstanding service which included an exceptional moment of bravery, Williams said during a standoff with a disturbed man with a gun on Arkansas Highway 365 South outside the city limits when Maumelle officers were called to assist Pulaski County Sheriff’s deputies. In fact, Williams said Campbell responded from his home and didn’t have communications equipment and noticed two deputies about to walk into an ambush from the wanted man hiding with his gun ready to do whatever he intended to do. Campbell moved out of cover into the open and shot at the man from a great distance to distract him from the ambush, exposing himself in order to protect the two deputies.

The standoff ended when Maumelle police dogs attacked the man forcing his surrender, Williams said.

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