Virginia Police Chiefs Recognize Twenty-Three Officers with 2018 Awards for Lifesaving
Officers from Albemarle County, Buena Vista, Chesterfield County, Culpeper, Hanover County, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Prince William County, Richmond and Virginia State Police honored for their extraordinary lifesaving efforts.Twenty-three Virginia public safety officers are the recipients of the 2018 Awards for Lifesaving presented by the Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police & Foundation (VACP). The awards will be announced September 11 at the VACP Annual Conference in Roanoke, Virginia, and awarded at a later date at ceremonies at the officers' agencies.
The Award for Lifesaving recognizes an officer's actions that put the officer in harm's way in the attempt to save the life of another individual. This year's honorees risked their own lives in an effort to save others from burning buildings and vehicles, drownings, stabbings, shootings, attempted suicides, and other dangerous situations.
The 2018 recipients of the VACP Award for Lifesaving are as follows:
Albemarle County Police Department
Officer Paul Quillon
On March 23, 2017, Officer Quillon was the first officer at the scene of an early morning single vehicle crash on Garth Road in Albemarle County. The vehicle had left the roadway and struck a tree. Officer Quillon observed that the vehicle was on fire with one person trapped inside.
Officer Quillon first attempted to put out the flames with his fire extinguisher, but was unsuccessful due to the size of the fire. Multiple citizens had attempted to free the driver, but they too had been unsuccessful. Without regard for his own safety, Officer Quillon attempted to free the driver twice on his own. With the driver's legs trapped beneath the dashboard and the intense heat from the flames, both of these initial attempts were unsuccessful.
Undaunted, he returned to the flaming vehicle a third time. During this attempt, he was able to extract the driver and pull her to safety. As he moved her to a safe location, her clothing was smoking from the heat. Within seconds of freeing her from the vehicle, it was engulfed in flames. There is no doubt that Officer Quillon saved a life that day.
The Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police & Foundation is proud to recognize Albemarle County Police Officer Paul Quillon with the 2018 VACP Award for Lifesaving.
Buena Vista Police Department
Officer Jacob Christopher Moore
Early on Sunday, April 2, 2018, shortly after coming on duty, Buena Vista Police Officer Jacob Moore was dispatched to assist the fire department with traffic control for a structure fire on Linden Avenue. Officer Moore was the first responder to arrive on the scene.
Officer Moore turned onto Linden Ave and observed that the residence was on fire. Flames were noticeable in the attached garage and smoke was billowing from the residence. Officer Moore immediately knocked on the front door to alert the residents. Thomas and Lovey Atkinson were at home but were not aware that their home was on fire. Officer Moore quickly removed Mrs. Atkinson from the home but could not locate her husband. Officer Moore reentered the home and went into the basement, where he found Mr. Atkinson. Both Officer Moore and Mr. Atkinson exited the burning building, and Mr. Atkinson was reunited with his wife.
While checking the couple's welfare, Mrs. Atkinson alerted Officer Moore that “Zoey” was still inside. Fearing that there was another person inside the house with flames visibly showing throughout the structure, Officer Moore entered the home for a second time to look for Zoey. He checked the first floor with no luck, so he went down to the basement calling for Zoey. He noticed through the building smoke what appeared to be a small dog running across the floor. He then realized that Zoey was the family pet. Officer Moore called to the dog but she would not approach the officer.
Officer Moore was able to calm the dog and he retrieved her and quickly exited the burning building. The thickness of the smoke forced Officer Moore to crouch so as not to be overcome by the smoke and fire. He took the dog outside to the thankful owners.
A small crew of firefighters and Bueva Vista Police Lieutenant Chittum arrived to assist. Seeing that the fire crew was understaffed, Officer Moore and Lieutenant Chittum grabbed the fire hose and began to spray the fire. Neither officer is a trained firefighter, but both saw the need to assist. They were able to contain the fire and save the home from further damage. The Buena Vista Police Department, the fire victims and the entire community are proud of the firefighting efforts of both officers and especially Officer Moore for his heroic acts of lifesaving.
The Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police & Foundation is proud to recognize Buena Vista Police Officer Jacob Christopher Moore with the 2018 VACP Award for Lifesaving.
Chesterfield County Police Department
OFC Jonathon M. Sorley
OFC Brian J. Simmons
On June 6, 2017, Officer First Class Jonathon M. Sorley and Officer First Class Brian J. Simmons were assisting with a motor vehicle accident in the 1000 block of Huguenot Road.
A pickup truck traveling southbound passed through the accident scene and subsequently ran off the road, striking a utility pole. The force of the impact knocked the power lines free from the pole and exploded upon hitting the ground, setting the rear of the vehicle on fire. As Officer Simmons and Officer Sorley quickly moved to that crash scene, they heard a second explosion and saw additional power lines falling beside the vehicle, which ignited the vehicle's passenger side. Officer Simmons ran to the driver's side and found the door was pinned shut by the electrical pole guide wire. Officer Simmons used his patrol knife to cut through the driver's seat belt. Officer Simmons and Officer Sorley worked quickly to remove the unresponsive driver through the vehicle's window. A group of community members observed the crash and ran to assist. Together, they transported the victim to the parking lot of the gas station beside the crash location and away from the growing fire. The victim was placed in the ambulance, where he regained consciousness. He had no major injuries and appeared to have suffered a medical event leading up to the crash. The fire continued to spread quickly, destroying the entire vehicle before the fire department could extinguish the blaze.
The quick actions of Officer First Class Brian J. Simmons and Officer First Class Jonathon M. Sorley undoubtedly saved the life of the crash victim. Even though the vehicle had become engulfed in flames, they did not hesitate to place themselves in harm's way to rescue the trapped driver.
The Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police & Foundation is proud to recognize Chesterfield County OFC Jonathon M. Sorley and OFC Brian J. Simmons with the 2018 VACP Award for Lifesaving.
Culpeper Police Department
Officer Johnny Slaughter
On May 23, 2018, Officer John Slaughter and fellow officers responded to a call for service at the Novant/UVA Culpeper Medical Center for a subject armed with a loaded shotgun and threatening suicide.
When officers arrived at the hospital, they encountered a subject armed with a shotgun, pointing it at his own head with one hand on the trigger. He was standing near the Crisis Intervention Team Assessment Center, threatening to take his own life and yelling at officers not to come any closer. The responding officers took up cover and concealment positions in the area parking lots.
When Officer Slaughter arrived on location, he realized he had the closest position to the subject. He initially took a cover position with his handgun behind another officer's patrol car. He instantly began negotiating with the armed subject, who was still pointing the shotgun at his own head with his finger on the trigger.
Officer Slaughter realized communicating with the subject behind concealment was not effective. Knowing and trusting that his fellow officers had him covered, Officer Slaughter stepped out from behind the patrol car and began speaking to the 22-year-old face-to-face at about 50 feet of distance. Officer Slaughter, who is a Crisis Intervention Team member, began utilizing his training and experience and started a dialogue with the subject. Officer Slaughter lowered his handgun and closed the gap within 35 feet with no cover or concealment, while still communicating with the subject.
It was during this time when the subject became more relaxed and comfortable with Officer Slaughter that the subject took his hand off the trigger upon Officer Slaughter's request. At this point, Sergeant Luke Altman was able to deploy a less-lethal munition striking the subject in the back instantly immobilizing and disarming the subject. The subject was taken into custody with minor injuries.
Officer Slaughter placed his own personal safety at risk to save this 22-year-old man's life who was in a mental crisis, and potentially save the lives of his fellow officers and hospital staff. Officer Slaughter relied on his training and his trust in his fellow officers to defuse a potentially deadly situation.
The Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police & Foundation is proud to recognize Culpeper Police Officer Johnny Slaughter with the 2018 VACP Award for Lifesaving.
Hanover County Sheriff's Office
Deputy Christopher Kothe
On January 7, 2018, at while traveling in the area of Beaverdam School Road, Deputy Christopher Kothe observed what appeared to be a large amount of smoke coming from the chimney area of a residence. Given the extreme frigid temperatures, observing steam or smoke from exhaust vents or chimneys was not unusual; however, Deputy Kothe stopped to inspect the smoke coming from the chimney area. As Deputy Kothe turned on his spotlight to examine the area of the smoke, Deputy Kothe not only observed smoke coming from the chimney but smoke bellowing out of an attic vent next to the chimney. Believing the house to be on fire, Deputy Kothe ran to the front door of the residence to make contact with the homeowner. While banging on the front door to wake up the homeowners, Deputy Kothe also noticed a fire spreading in the living room next to the fireplace.
Deputy Kothe already had Fire/EMS responding to the scene and continued to give updates on the fire. A brief moment later, the homeowner, who was asleep downstairs, immediately came running to the door and was startled by the fire. Deputy Kothe inquired about other occupants and Deputy Kothe was advised there were two other occupants upstairs. Both Deputy Kothe and the homeowner were able to alert the other two residents of the fire inside the house, and they immediately came downstairs. They were able to rescue their pets from inside the residence. As this was taking place, Deputy Kothe responded back to his patrol vehicle to obtain his fire extinguisher with the hopes of keeping the fire from spreading. Deputy Kothe then responded back inside the residence to assist with containing the fire and making sure all occupants and pets made it out safely.
A short time later, Hanover Fire/EMS arrived on scene and took over operational command. The fire was quickly contained and, other than minor smoke inhalation, no injuries were reported. Deputy Chris Kothe is to be commended for his keen observation skills and his quick thinking under pressure. Deputy Kothe's unselfish action undoubtedly saved the occupants of the residence from serious injury or death.
The Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police & Foundation is proud to recognize Hanover County Deputy Sheriff Christopher Kothe with the 2018 VACP Award for Lifesaving.
Hanover County Sheriff's Office
Deputy Krystal Laine
Deputy Donald Fein
On July 25, 2017, Deputy Krystal Laine was on routine patrol traveling on Howards Mill Road, crossing the South Anna River Bridge. Laine observed a male sitting on the bridge and slumped over the rail. Laine made contact with the subject and observed that he was visibly upset. The subject threatened to jump off the bridge to kill himself. Laine utilized her Crisis Intervention skills and offered a bottle of water. The subject walked towards Laine's vehicle and began a conversation. Laine allowed the male to open up and confide in her. During the dialogue, Laine was able to find common ground and reassure the subject that everyone has struggles in life. The subject advised he wanted to kill himself because he had violated his parole and did not want to return to jail. Laine could tell the male was drunk and his mood changed constantly.
Being in the west end of the county, Laine's backup was more than ten minutes away. The subject was large in stature, and it was later determined he was a two-time state champion high school wrestler. During the encounter, the Sheriff's Office received a teletype from Louisa County in reference to the male being suicidal. Laine continued calming dialogue and was able to keep the subject from attempting to jump from the bridge. As Deputy Fein arrived on scene, he assisted with the dialogue. Laine and Fein spoke with the subject for approximately 45 minutes as he stood by the railing. Fein offered the male some food from his patrol vehicle and continued to establish rapport. After an extended period of time and dialogue, the male's body language and actions indicated he might jump as he turned and moved towards the railing. Fein seized the opportunity, reached out, and grabbed the subject's waistband, enabling him to pull the male towards the vehicle and away from the bridge.
Laine and Fein were able to secure the male in handcuffs, and he was placed in custody under an emergency custody order. The male was transported to MRMC for an evaluation. During the arrest procedure, the deputies continued to coax the male and reassure him about getting help. A temporary detention order was written, and the male was transported to Richmond Community Hospital. During the ECO process, the male thanked Laine and Fein and seemed to be truly thankful for their actions, which saved his life.
Laine and Fein were recognized as Co-Officers of the Month in August 2017 and received the Hanover County Sheriff's Office Excellent Service Award for their life saving actions in July 2017. Laine's and Fein's actions, while putting the officers in harm's way in an attempt to save the individual's life, demonstrated a lifesaving success which brought honor to both officers and the department.
The Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police & Foundation is proud to recognize Hanover County Deputy Sheriff Krystal Laine and Deputy Sheriff Donald Fein with the 2018 VACP Award for Lifesaving.
Norfolk Police Department
Officer David Dubus
On May 19, 2017, the Norfolk Emergency Communications Center began receiving multiple calls regarding four children in the water, without personal flotation devices, at Community Beach. Additional calls advised that a male entered the water in an attempt to rescue the children. Two of the children were able to return to shore and were assisted by onlookers. At approximately 1834hrs, Officer Dubus arrived on scene along with a Norfolk Fire Engine. Officer Dubus and a Fire Captain removed their duty gear, donned flotation devices and entered the water to rescue the remaining victims. After swimming approximately 300 yards, Officer Dubus reached the first child victim and passed her to the Fire Captain. Officer Dubus continued swimming another 100 yards to the other two victims.
When he reached the remaining victims, Officer Dubus took control of a nine-year-old female and instructed the adult to begin swimming to shore. Officer Dubus was approximately 50 yards away from the adult victim and swimming to shore with the female victim when he heard the adult male scream for help, stating that he could not swim anymore. Officer Dubus, with child victim in tow, swam back to the adult male and took control of him. Officer Dubus was now in control of two victims who were suffering from exhaustion, hypothermia and were incapable of self-assistance.
Officer Dubus continued swimming to shore with the remaining victims until the Coast Guard arrived. Officer Dubus ensured the victims were safely aboard the vessel before he was pulled from the water.
Officer Dubus was working against severe personal conditions relating to exhaustion and hypothermia, in addition to weather and victim fatigue. Even under these extreme circumstances, Officer
Dubus safeguarded the victims until help arrived. Officer Dubus performed an act of extraordinary bravery at imminent danger to personal safety in the line of duty and saved the lives of a nine-year-old child and 33-year-old adult.
The Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police & Foundation is proud to recognize Norfolk Police Officer David Dubus with the 2018 VACP Award for Lifesaving.
Portsmouth Police Department
Detective Robert Dyer
Detective Stanley Alexander
On November 6, 2017, Police Officer Angelina Baaklini was patrolling her assigned area when she came upon a suspicious male on a bicycle. Officer Baaklini recognized him by name and face and had knowledge that he had an active juvenile detention order. As Officer Baakini was attempting to detain the 15-year-old, he produced a handgun and shot Officer Baaklini five times. One of those rounds was stopped by her ballistic vest, but four rounds struck her in the body. Officer Baaklini took cover behind her police vehicle, drew her weapon and radioed Dispatch that she had been shot.
Detectives Robert Dyer and Stanley Alexander were the first officers on scene and began providing necessary first aid. Detective Alexander placed a tourniquet on Officer Baaklini's left leg while Detective Dyer held pressure on and ultimately packed a wound in her upper left chest with gauze. These actions along with Officer Baaklini's ability to remain calm ultimately helped save her life. At that time, no one knew the location of the suspect. Until another Officer responded to provide cover, these Detectives were vulnerable to the suspect returning to the scene. Detectives Dyer and Alexander continued to provide first aid and keep Officer Baaklini calm until Portsmouth Fire Rescue and Emergency Services responded and assumed her treatment.
Officer Baaklini was transported to Sentara Norfolk General Hospital where she underwent two successful surgeries that night. The 15-year-old male suspect was charged with numerous offenses, including attempted capital murder of a police officer and use of a firearm. He was adjudicated as an adult and was found guilty of all charges.
The Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police & Foundation is proud to recognize Portsmouth Police Detective Robert Dyer and Detective Stanley Alexander with the 2018 VACP Award for Lifesaving.
Prince William County Police Department
Officer Michael Pope
Officer Alexander Cordner
Officer Randy L. Johnston
Officer Peter F. Inskeep
Officer Stephen A. Webber
Officer Tyren A. Hawkins
On the afternoon of July 27, 2017, officers responded to a stabbing at East Longview Drive. Upon arrival, officers were faced with the stabbing suspect still on scene in a car, the victim lying in the front yard, and a fire in the house. While the suspect was being taken into custody, Officer Johnston went to the stabbing victim in the front yard. He used his trauma kit to render first aid and comfort the victim. The officers saw smoke billowing from the home where the suspect had started a fire. Officer Michael Pope received information that there might be two children in the house. Officer Michael Pope and Officer Alexander Cordner entered the house and went to the basement area where the fire and smoke were the most intense.
They continued their search until they were almost overcome by smoke and exited into the backyard. Officers Randy Johnston, Peter Inskeep, Stephen Webber and Tyren Hawkins entered the upper level of the home to clear it as they had received information that occupants were still in the home. Having cleared the upper levels, the officers exited the home. Still hearing noise coming from the structure and fearing the children might be hiding, Officer Randy Johnston re-entered the home and attempted to search before being driven out by the conditions.
The information on the children and other occupants still being in the home later turned out to be erroneous; however, the officers acted without hesitation attempting to locate individuals in the home. Officer Michael Pope and Officer Alexander Cordner were incapacitated by their exposure to fire conditions and transported by rescue to be treated for significant smoke inhalation. Officer Randy Johnston was treated on-scene for smoke inhalation, and Officer Stephen Webber suffered smoke inhalation and was treated at the hospital.
With selfless devotion to duty, these officers exposed themselves to dangerous fire conditions without protective equipment, provided first aid and comfort to the victim and took a violent suspect into custody under high-stress conditions. Their actions were in keeping with the highest standards of the law enforcement profession and reflect positively on themselves and the Prince William County Police Department.
The Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police & Foundation is proud to recognize Prince William County Officers Michael Pope, Alexander Cordner, Randy L. Johnston, Peter F. Inskeep, Stephen A. Webber, and Tyren A. Hawkins with the 2018 VACP Award for Lifesaving.
Richmond Police Department
Del. Derrick Longoria
MPO William Cole
Officer Rebekha Moore
Officer Lashaun Turner
Around 2 a.m. on Jan. 20, as Detective Derrick Longoria was driving on Roanoke Street toward Forest Hill Avenue, he noticed a woman tying a rope around a bridge railing. He circled back to find the individual was sitting on top of the bridge's safety rail seemingly about to jump.
Detective Longoria parked his vehicle and, as he approached, he observed a black rope around the woman's wrists and a thicker rope looped on her neck as if she intended to hang herself. He then called dispatch for additional units and slowly approached the woman. He attempted to speak with her from a foot away, but the woman remained silent and appeared to be in deep thought. Soon Officers Rebekha Moore and Lashaun Turner arrived at the scene.
Master Patrol Officer William Cole arrived and, after a briefing from Officers Moore and Turner, made the decision to approach the woman. The woman continued to sit quietly on the rail, looking down at the water and facing away from the officers, unaware they were nearby.
Suddenly, the woman jumped from the bridge with the ropes still tied to her wrists and neck. Detective Longoria quickly grabbed her as MPO Cole and Officers Moore and Turner assisted. They were able to grip different parts of her body and pull her over the safety railing onto the walkway of the bridge.
She screamed and made several suicidal references as officers handcuffed the woman for her safety and transported her to a local hospital for evaluation.
Due to the quick response and training of Detective Longoria, MPO Cole, and Officers Moore and Turner, all four individuals saved the life of a citizen who may have died without their intervention.
The Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police & Foundation is proud to recognize Richmond Police Det. Derrick Longoria, MPO William Cole, Officer Rebekha Moore & Officer Lashaun Turner with the 2018 VACP Award for Lifesaving.
Virginia State Police
Trooper Joshua W. Hudson
On March 30, 2018, Trooper Joshua W. Hudson and Senior Trooper Jodi Baker stopped at the Kilmarnock Volunteer Fire Department and heard a call from a Lancaster County Sheriff's Deputy regarding a single&vehicle crash. The dispatcher from the Lancaster Sheriffs' Office asked if the driver was still on scene and the Deputy stated he was not sure, but there were car parts everywhere.
Senior Trooper Baker and Trooper Hudson immediately responded to the crash scene, where they observed a red Ford Edge on its roof, off on the left&hand side of the road, surrounded by an extremely large debris field.
As the troopers approached, they noticed a small fire at the crash scene. Trooper Hudson immediately exited his vehicle and retrieved his Department-issued fire extinguisher. As the two troopers approached the burning vehicle, another individual who had arrived on scene used a window punch to break the drivers' side rear window. An occupant in the vehicle attempted to escape the burning vehicle through the broken window. He was able to only get his head out when he went limp with his body still in the drivers' seat and flames engulfing him. Trooper Hudson used the fire extinguisher to quickly extinguish the subject's head and upper body. Trooper Hudson and a Kilmarnock Volunteer Firefighter grabbed the subject under his arms but discovered that he was entangled in something inside the vehicle.
With assistance from a White Stone Volunteer Firefighter and a Kilmarnock Town Police Officer, they were able to free the driver from the burning vehicle. Trooper Hudson stayed with the subject, assessing the man's injuries and monitoring him for shock until EMS arrived. The driver was transported to the helipad at Rappahannock General Hospital and flown to M.C.V.
Virginia State Police Trooper Joshua W. Hudson's heroic actions were instrumental in saving this man's life and the Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police & Foundation is proud to recognize him with the 2018 VACP Award for Lifesaving.
Virginia State Police
Trooper Jesse R. Lewis
On May 20, 2017, Trooper Jesse R. Lewis was called to assist the Fauquier County Sheriff's Office with a lookout for a vehicle involved in an apparent domestic situation.
While patrolling the area in hopes of locating the vehicle, Trooper Lewis came upon a single vehicle crash in the 3500 block of Midland Road. The vehicle matched the description of the vehicle given out in the alert.
The vehicle had run off the side of the road and crashed into a tree. The driver and passenger were trapped inside as the doors were wedged shut due to the impact with the tree, and flames were beginning to appear within the vehicle.
Trooper Lewis immediately called for help, and, as the intensity of the fire rapidly increased, so did the screams coming from within the vehicle. Without hesitation, Trooper Lewis ran to the burning vehicle, and with the help of bystanders, was able to free the passenger.
He then ran to the driver's side where he attempted to dislodge the door. Knowing that every second counted in order to save the driver from the growing fire, Trooper Lewis ran to the passenger's side, crawled into the burning vehicle and pulled the driver across the front seats and out the passenger side, and out of harm's way.
Within seconds of the driver being removed from the vehicle, it was consumed in flames. The occupants, the husband and wife, who had been involved in the earlier domestic situation, were flown to the hospital.
If it hadn't been for Trooper Lewis' bravery, determination and dedication to duty, the couple would have perished in the fire. His quick and extraordinary actions, which put himself at great personal risk, ultimately saved the lives of two people that day.
The Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police & Foundation is proud to recognize Virginia State Police Trooper Jesse R. Lewis with the 2018 VACP Award for Lifesaving.
The Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police & Foundation (www.vachiefs.org) is a statewide charitable organization of federal, state and local police chiefs and other law enforcement executives dedicated to improving the professionalism of police agencies in Virginia and to providing training and education programs for law enforcement executives. The Association was founded in 1926 and has more than 600 members.
Contact: Ms. Dana Schrad, Executive Director
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For Immediate Release