The State of Texas and the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement Officer Standards and Education

2010 Law Enforcement Achievement Awards Recipients
Each year, the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement Officer Standards and Education (TCLEOSE) accepts nominations for the annual State of Texas Law Enforcement Achievement Awards. Created by Senate Bill 992 in 1989, the awards are presented to selected peace officers, reserve officers, jailers, and custodial officers who are licensed by TCLEOSE. Nominees should exceed the normal expectations of job performance through acts of professional achievement, public service, or valor. During the 81st Legislative session, Section 1701.401(f) of the Texas Occupation Code was amended to read: “The commission may present awards relating to not more than a total of 20 incidents and accomplishments each year.” This means that TCLEOSE is authorized to make achievement awards to the individuals in twenty separate events and/or accomplishments. This change facilitates group as well as individual nominations in the categories of professional achievement, public service, or valor. The nominations must be submitted by an elected official of the state, an elected official of a political subdivision, an administrator of a law enforcement agency, or a person holding a current license issued by TCLEOSE. A judging panel is chosen to review the nominations, and the list of nominees is then presented to the Commissioners for final determination.

Professional Achievement

Officer Louis C. Felini

Dallas Police Department

Peace Officer Louis C. Felini began working with the Dallas Police Department in September 1988. In October 2007, he was assigned as Deployment Supervisor and tasked with development of operations that targeted crime around truck stops, motels, rail yards, and apartment complexes that had been taken over by gangs. Officer Felini spearheaded the Prostitute Diversion Initiative, which brought outside services to the streets to provide prostitutes with an exit from the sex trade and prevent recidivism in the criminal justice system. The operation is conducted once a month with the Dallas Police Department, neighboring law enforcement agencies, and over 45 social services and faith-based organizations. Sergeant Felini also developed a DNA database at no cost to the Dallas Police Department to identify these women when they became the victims of violent crimes. Part of the program also educated these women on indicators that could help them identify truck drivers as persons of interest to the FBI’s Violent Criminal Apprehension Program, which is an integral part of their Highway Serial Killers Initiative. Sergeant Felini also developed Tactical Approach To Target Organized Offenders operations to combat gang-induced crimes at apartment complexes, and a burglar tracking system to help and implement patrol officers to identify suspects on their beats. This law enforcement benefit is for long term intelligent strategies for a transient population. Sergeant Felini takes the initiative to develop programs to fight crime and travels across the county to speak to law enforcement agencies about his programs. In Sergeant Felini’s career of 21 years, he has earned many commendations and awards for himself and for the Dallas Police Department, including the 1996 Achievement Award for Valor. It is for these reasons that Sergeant Louis C. Felini is awarded the Professional Achievement award.

Public Service Jailer Crystal A. Irvin DeWitt County Sheriff’s Office

Jail Captain Crystal A. Irvin has been a jailer with the DeWitt County Sheriff’s Office for just over 4 years, and is highly motivated and community active. In April 2010, Jail Captain Irvin organized the DeWitt County Sheriff’s Office Employee Association softball tournament and helped to raise over $3,000. A $1,000 scholarship from the tournament’s funds was given to a local senior high school student interested in a law enforcement degree. June 2010 was hot, but not for the elderly thanks to Crystal, who coordinated a fan drive. In August, Jail Captain Irvin organized a school supply drive with matching donations of $900 for four school districts, along with a $500 scholarship to an employee wanting to attend a police academy. November’s Taco Thursday provided breakfast tacos prepared by DeWitt County Sheriff’s Office personnel, which raised $965 for the Deputy Santa Program. Jailer Irvin arranged a police patch and volleyball tournament: another fund drive for Deputy Santa. After learning about a single-parent employee with an autistic child, Crystal rallied her co-workers to provide a birthday party and gifts. All the while, Jail Captain Crystal Irvin oversaw the expanding 51 to 161 bed jail facility. It is for this driving force that the Achievement Award for Public Service is awarded to Jail Captain Crystal A. Irvin. Senior Deputy Sheriff Derrick R. Taylor Travis County Sheriff’s Office

Senior Deputy Derrick R. Taylor, a jailer for over 19 years and a 12-year peace officer with the Travis County Sherriff’s Office, successfully facilitated several presentations focused on youth behavior. Deputy Taylor presents “Consequences” to inform at-risk youths of the positive and negative effects of their choices. “Shattered Dreams” is another program in which students are educated on the impact of drinking and driving. Derrick also serves as Advisor for Explorer Post 1099, providing guidance and structure to young people in weekly meetings, where they learn about careers in law enforcement and valuable community services. Each year Deputy Taylor arranges for boat rides at Mansfield Dam for Texas School for the Deaf students for Ranger Days. “Extravaganza” is a daylong law enforcement fun day with free food, games, door prizes, along with access to many area nonprofits and the opportunity for citizens to meet officers up close and personal. This “give back” to the community was to make it better known that Travis County Sheriff’s deputies are always on duty to help. It is with deep thanks for Senior Deputy Derrick R. Taylor commitment to his community that the Public Service award is given. Jailer Adan Maldonado Webb County Sheriff’s Office

Jailer Adan Maldonado is years ahead of his coworkers as a result of his “can do” attitude. A corrections officer for the Webb County Sheriff’s Office for the past year and a half, Maldonado, who also has a Master’s Degree from Texas A&M University, received his TCLEOSE Instructor’s Proficiency Certification in 2010. Jailer Maldonado is a Beta Trainer for the new pilot program “NetSmartz,” developed by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children in conjunction with the Internet Crimes against Children Task Force in partnership with Boys and Girls Clubs of America. Netsmartz got its start in Laredo and teaches Internet safety to children from kindergarten through 12th grade. The Netsmartz Program uses 3-D animation characters such as Clicky the Netsmartz Robot to warn about online dangers and teach how to avoid them as the characters round up “Webville Outlaws.” In grades 3-6, the program introduces children to the dangerous “Wizzywigs” and what to do about them. The teens and tweens presentation consists of

real-life stories told by victims of Internet exploitation, and warns how easy it is to track someone online. Netsmartz offers Parents and Communities an extensive educational presentation with resources. Along with Principal Abraham Rodriguez of Salinas Elementary School, Jailer Maldonado was instrumental in helping to get the approval of the United ISD for this program. Jailer Maldonado has made children and the general public more aware of Internet dangers with extensive planning, coordination, training, and promotion with airings on the local TV stations and newspapers; and in doing so, is hereby awarded the State of Texas Public Service award.

Valor Officer Justin B. Graham Corporal Paul D. Ware Amarillo Police Department

On May 15, 2010, Officer Justin B. Graham was en route to the Amarillo Police Department and Corporal Paul D. Ware was unloading his patrol car after they had completed their 10-hour shifts when a call went out for any units available. Officer Graham, a peace officer with one and half years’ experience, along with 11-year Corporal Ware, immediately responded to an apartment complex fire. The officers were told that a 67-year-old woman was trapped inside the apartment. Smoke kept them from seeing where the victim was as she called out for help. Crawling, they attempted to extract her from where she was stuck between a couch and wall. Burns on her arms caused her skin to slip, which prevented Corporal Ware from pulling her to safety. After running outside to get a clear breath and returning, Corporal Ware flipped the couch over so that Officer Graham could pull her out and extinguish the flames in her hair. The victim’s dog was also rescued. Both Justin and Paul were both treated for smoke inhalation at the scene. Sadly, the victim later passed away because of the extensive nature of her burns. It is for their courageous and brave efforts in placing their own lives in extreme danger that the Achievement Award for Valor is presented to Amarillo Police Department’s Officer Justin B. Graham and Corporal Paul D. Ware. Deputy Sheriff Gerald W. Johnson, Jr. Bandera Co. Sheriff’s Office

Deputy Sheriff Gerald W. Johnson, Jr. was a 2-year peace officer in Louisiana before coming to Bandera County Sheriff’s Office, where he has served for the past 10 years. On the evening of August 28, 2010, Sergeant Johnson was called in early and assigned to a case of Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon. It was reported that a verbal altercation had taken place with one subject firing a semi-automatic pistol at the other in his car, nearly missing a child in the back seat. Sergeant Johnson requested a warrant to search for firearms. The subject’s criminal histories revealed that the subject had multi-state felonies records and a history of violent behavior. It was believed that there was a risk that the subject would use firearms against officers executing the no-knock-provision warrant. Sergeant Johnson used a ram to enter the house as the suspects ran into different rooms. Gerald encountered the primary suspect hiding behind a male and holding a gun. The suspect fired his weapon, striking Sergeant Johnson, whose vest saved his life. The suspect turned his attention to another officer, and reached for an assault rifle in an effort to shoot through the wall to kill the other officer. Sergeant Johnson was able to shoot and kill the suspect before any harm came to the other officer. It is for his loyalty to protection, his clear thinking, and the placing of his fellow officers’ lives before his own that the Valor award is given to Bandera County Sheriff’s Office Sergeant Gerald W. Johnson, Jr.

Deputy Sheriff Paul D. Robertson And Patrol Officer James P. Hildebrand Lieutenant Terry D. Miller

Delta County Sheriff’s Office Commerce Police Department

On March 7, 2010, Sergeant Paul D. Robertson, an officer with six and half years with the Delta County Sheriff’s Office, was off duty shopping at Wal-Mart with his wife and two-year-old daughter. Unbeknownst to them, several police agencies were involved in a vehicle pursuit with shots fired that would eventually end at this Wal Mart. As Robertson was shopping, an employee ran past him screaming “run, he’s got a gun!” Paul sent his family to the rear of the store while he advanced to the front. He found himself facing a crazed gunman with an AK-47 and a 9-millimeter handgun. Deputy Robertson, armed with a six shot revolver, demanded that the suspect drop his weapons. There was an immediate exchange of gunfire. Paul was shot in the chest as he emptied his weapon. Commerce Police Department’s Patrol Officer James P. Hildebrand, who has over 8 years as a telecommunications operator and three years as a peace officer; and 17-year veteran Lieutenant Terry D. Miller were the officers in pursuit. A caller had advised dispatch that a car was firing rounds and traveling at 70 mph towards the City of Commerce. Both Hildebrand and Miller began searching for the suspect. Lieutenant Miller spotted the suspect with the driver’s window down and a rifle’s barrel pointed directly at him. Miller quickly made a u-turn and exited his unit a short distance away. As he approached the suspect’s vehicle, he could see the suspect and Officer Hildebrand both standing next to their vehicles, firing multiple rounds at each other. The suspect re-entered his car and sped away. Unhurt James and Terry followed in pursuit to the Wal-Mart store parking lot using a PA to warn people of the danger. As both Officers Hildebrand and Miller made their way to the main entrance of the store, they could hear more shots and found Deputy Robertson down from his wounds. Officer Hildebrand was able to end the attack by killing the suspect. The Achievement Award for Valor is given to Delta County Deputy Sheriff Paul D. Robertson for his unselfish and heroic advance on an armed suspect, clearly saving the lives of citizens in the store, including his own family. Patrol Officer James P. Hildebrand and Lieutenant Terry D. Miller of the Commerce Police Department are honored with the award for Valor for placing their lives in danger to save the life of a fellow officer and citizens. Officer William C. Shumpert Dallas Police Department

On October 27, 2010, Officer William C. Shumpert was on patrol for the Dallas Police Department. This three-and-a-half-year peace officer observed a vehicle collide with the rear of another vehicle, causing it to spin around and strike a concrete walled median near a turnpike. The car instantly burst into flames. Upon inspection on the wrecked vehicle, Officer Shumpert saw an unconscious man trapped inside. Having no tools and only a few seconds to face the flames, a potential explosion, and the dangers of the traffic conditions that surrounded him, Officer Shumpert used the palms of his hands to shatter the driver’s window. He was able pull the man through the window and away from the burning car. Dallas Police Department‘s Officer William C. Shumpert placed himself at great risk while rescuing another’s life, which exemplifies the dedication to serve and protect. Officer Shumpert is given the distinction of the Valor award.

Corporal Jeremie J. Atilano Patrol Deputy Ryan M. Connelly Patrol Sergeant Deputy David B. “Bryan” McGee Patrol Deputy Manuel Valdez III

Ellis County Sheriff’s Office

On the evening of June 22, 2010, Ellis County Sheriff’s Deputies Jeremie J. Atilano, Ryan M. Connelly, Bryan McGee, and Manuel Valdez responded to a call of a woman trapped in a car that was on fire. Upon arrival, the officers could see the car engulfed in flames and could hear the screams of a woman inside being burned alive. These brave officers emptied their fire extinguishers in hopes of controlling the fire, and then used empty ice chests provided by passers-by to scoop water out of a nearby ditch to pour on the fire, themselves, and the woman as they took turns running into the flames to get her out of the car. The woman, trapped because of a jammed seat belt and car door, was finally pulled to safety. It is for their quick actions and call to duty without fearing for the safety of their own lives that the officers were able to rescue this woman. Corporal Jeremie J. Atilano is a 10-year jailer and 7-year peace officer. Patrol Deputy Ryan M. Connelly is a 5-year jailer and 4-year peace officer. Patrol Sergeant Deputy Bryan McGee is a 14year peace officer, and Patrol Deputy Manuel Valdez served as a 2-year jailer and is a 4-year peace officer. It is for their combined efforts to save another’s life that the award for Valor is presented. Deputy Courtney L. Banks Deputy Trey N. Brogdon Deputy Frank J. Cempa, Sr. Deputy David P. Craven Deputy Carlos B. Pocasangre Deputy Charles E. Scott, Jr. Deputy Ronald D. Skarpa Fort Bend Co. Sheriff’s Office

A call for help on May 22, 2010, from the Sugar Land Police Department in locating suspects from a bank robbery that occurred earlier that day set these Patrol Deputies into action. Deputy Charles Scott was the first to locate the suspect vehicle. Scott was shot in the hand and wrist, and a bullet grazed his head from the back of the getaway van with an AK-47, but he continued to give chase. A passing woman in a truck with her three children was hit by a stray bullet by the suspect. As ambulances arrived, Deputies Banks, Brogdon, Cempa, Craven, Pocasangre, and Skarpa located the suspect vehicle again and were fired upon. Despite the heavy fire, they continued the pursuit until their unit became disabled. The pursuit ended with one suspect being taken into custody and the other suspect dying after being shot by Deputy Cempa. It was later learned that the suspects were involved in 28 bank robberies and were on the FBI’s 10 Most Wanted. It is with great thanks that Deputy Courtney L. Banks, 5 years with the Fort Bend Sheriff’s Office; Deputy Trey N. Brogdon, 1 year as peace officer and 2 years as a jailer, Deputy Frank J. Cempa, Sr., a 36year law enforcement veteran; Deputy David P. Craven, with over 9 years as a jailer and peace officer; Deputy Carlos B. Pocasangre, a 10-year jailer and peace officer; Deputy Charles E. Scott, a four-year peace officer; and Deputy Ronald D. Skarpa, a 14-year jailer and peace officer; are honored with the Valor award for their brave actions.

Officer Billy D. Brumley Officer Jamie J. Gray

Fort Worth Police Department

In March 2010, three men had been committing robberies of CVS/pharmacy and other drugstores in the Fort Worth area. In September, Officers Billy D. Brumley, with 2 years of peace officer experience, and Jamie J. Gray, with 7 years, volunteered to put a stop to these dangerous armed thieves. On October 1, after having set up surveillances, the officers observed two men exiting a vehicle wearing dark clothing and masks fitting the descriptions of the previous robberies. Officer Gray’s prior experience with this type of detail was crucial to the outcome of the operation. Although the officers placed their units in a tactical position to ensure minimal risk of harm to civilians, Officer Brumley had to abandon any form of cover to allow him a position that would prevent the suspects from escaping or taking hostages. After striking the store clerk in the head with a gun, the armed suspects exited the store with a backpack of money, but encountered Officer Brumley. As one of the suspects raised his weapon at Officer Brumley, Officer Gray fired, hitting the suspect. Officer Brumley gave chase to the second suspect, whom assist-units quickly apprehended. It is for their heroic acts that Fort Worth Police Department’s Officers Billy D. Brumley and Jamie J. Gray are awarded the Valor award. Officer Kerry Q. Gober Fort Worth Police Department

Fort Worth Officer Kerry Q. Gober was working patrol when officers located a kidnapping suspect from College Station. Unbeknownst to the officers, the armed suspect had already murdered his hostage and dumped her body. A slow-speed pursuit began on the freeway, and Officer Gober responded to follow the pursuit at a short distance to keep civilian traffic back and away from the ongoing pursuit. A spike attempt by officers on the freeway was made, but was unsuccessful. The suspect made a quick U-turn, and went in the wrong direction on the freeway, increasing his speed to 80 miles per hour. He steered his vehicle directly at Officer Gober’s patrol car. Kerry had only seconds to choose the best action. Rather than meeting the speeding SUV head-on or swerving to the right to avoid the collision and risking the safety of his fellow officers, he turned left to take the impact, putting as much of his patrol car as possible between himself and other vehicle. The impact caused the suspect to roll over, ending the pursuit. Officer Gober’s patrol unit was pushed more than 200 feet, where it came to rest against a guardrail and burst into flames. Conscious, but in shock, his first concern was still for his fellow officer as he was being rescued from his burning vehicle. Fort Worth Police Department’s Officer Kerry Q. Gober, a 4½-year peace officer, is presented the Valor award for exhibiting heroism above the call of duty with imminent risk to his life and receiving serious bodily injury in his effort to protect his fellow officers. Senior Officer Pedro Sandoval Houston Police Department

Officer Pedro Sandoval, with nearly 16 years at the Houston Police Department, was working approved offduty at a local bank. While manning his post, Officer Sandoval observed two masked suspects with pistols in hand enter the front of the bank. Recognizing that a robbery was taking place, Officer Sandoval took immediate and quick action to prevent the robbery, and protect the employees and customers in the bank. When confronted, the armed suspects fled to a getaway car. Officer Sandoval pursued the suspects into the parking lot, and captured one as the other escaped the scene in a stolen vehicle driven by a third suspect. Thanks to his quick action in confronting armed suspects in a public setting, Officer Pedro Sandoval risking his life to prevent harm to others, and is given the Valor award.

Deputy Charles D. Fabian

Limestone Co. Sheriff’s Office

After just less than 6 months of service with the Limestone County Sheriff’s Office, Deputy Charles D. Fabian was on routine patrol the morning of December 7, 2010. Deputy Fabian observed a fire in a single story residence. The homeowner, who was just returning running errands, advised him that her son, who had mental and physical disabilities, was in the house. Without fearing for his own life, Deputy Fabian rushed into the smoked filled house and located the 33-year-old man lying in bed. Deputy Fabian, with the mother’s help, was able to place the disabled man on a chair and pull him to safety. The house became fully engulfed in flames, and was destroyed. As the fire department and medical emergency teams arrived, Charles ignored his breathing difficulties and assisted in traffic control for approximately 45 minutes before seeking medical attention for himself. Due to this new Limestone County Sheriff’s Deputy’s disregard for his own safety, he was able to save a man’s life and keep order at the scene of an emergency. The achievement award for Valor is given Deputy Charles D. Fabian. Officer William B. "Bryan" Dudley Pasadena Police Department

Pasadena Police Officer William B.”Bryan” Dudley responded to a robbery in progress on the morning of July 12, 2010. After getting some cash, the robbery suspect had left a package at the bank and told the teller that it was a bomb. Upon his arrival, Officer Dudley quickly assessed the situation and identified the suspect, who was unaware of Officer Dudley presence because he had focused his attention on a fireman who happened to be walking by. Bryan, a 14-year peace officer, called out to the passing fireman in an effort to get him out of harm’s way and draw the suspect’s attention to himself. The suspect walked to neighboring shopping strip, and Officer Dudley, fearing that the suspect would enter a business and take a hostage, closed in on him. When the suspect refused to follow Officer Dudley’s commands and started to draw a gun, Officer Dudley responded with several rounds of gunfire. The suspect was killed. Officer Dudley’s quick actions and bravery in the line of duty prevented harm to a fellow public servant and citizens. For this reason, the award for Valor is given to Officer William B. “Bryan” Dudley of the Pasadena Police Department. Deputy KC Simpson Deputy Jerry S. "Steven" White Potter County Sheriff’s Office

On the night of August 3, 2010, the Amarillo Police Department responded to an Attempted Armed Abduction of a 34-year-old woman who was adding air to her car tire when a man approached her. The subject produced a semi-automatic pistol, put it to the woman’s head, and ordered her into his pickup truck. The victim ran away from him into the gas station’s convenience store and the subject fled the scene. A 911 call was made to the Potter County Sheriff’s Office as the subject traveled to another gas station where a grandmother was with her three grandchildren, ages 5, 12 and 16, were buying food. The subject parked his truck near their vehicle and waited for them to leave the store. As the family approached, he grabbed the 12-year-old girl, put the gun to her head, and tried to force her into his truck. The girl escaped as the grandmother struggled with the subject. The subject then shot and killed the grandmother as she turned away from him. After fleeing and minutes later, he approached two 11-year-old girls who were walking on a rural road, and was able to grab one of the girls and pull her into his truck. Potter County Deputy KC Simpson, a 3-year peace officer who knew his county and was able to look on the back roads, quickly spotted the subject’s truck and followed it as backup units headed his way. The 11-year-old girl was able to escape by jumping out of the moving vehicle as Deputy Steven White, a 7-year peace officer

with the Potter County Sheriff’s Office and 10 years of service as a Washington State Trooper, approached in assistance. Believing that the girl had been murdered and pushed out of the truck, Deputy White pulled in front of the truck to block it. The subject fled, but fired shots at the deputies. Deputy White returned fire, ending the tragic crime spree. It is an honor to give Potter County Sheriff’s Deputies KC Simpson and J. Steven White the Valor award. Officer Luther E. Cosby Roanoke Police Department

On the morning of February 22, 2010, Officer Luther E. Cosby of the Roanoke Police Department was en route to have a camera installed on his new police motorcycle in Dallas on his day off. During the trip, Officer Cosby encountered a rollover accident in which the vehicle was lying on its passenger side with the front portion in flames. Passersby were screaming that people were trapped inside the burning vehicle. Officer Cosby, a veteran peace officer for over 17 years, pulled out the windshield with the help of concerned citizens, but determined that, due to the vehicle’s damage, there was no way he could get the person out through the gap. Luther could see a woman’s leg trapped between the steering column and seat as she dangled upside down. He knew that he would have to climb inside the burning vehicle to free the victim’s leg. After a struggle, she was freed. Crawling to the back of the vehicle away from the rising flames, the victim was only able to exit the vehicle with the help of Officer Cosby, who had moved to the top of the vehicle. As the woman was taken to safety, the entire vehicle became engulfed in flames. Many thanks go out to this brave Roanoke motorcycle officer, who without thoughts of his own safety rescued a woman from imminent death. The Achievement Valor award is presented to Officer Luther E. Cosby. Valor-Posthumous Officer Jillian M. Smith Arlington Police Department

Officer Jillian M. Smith, a 10-month peace officer with the Arlington Police Department was dispatched to take a report on an assault that was called into 911 after the reported suspect had left the location. Officer Smith was interviewing the female victim and her 11-year-old daughter when the male suspect returned to the apartment and displayed a gun. Officer Smith positioned herself between the suspect and the girl in an effort to shield the child as the suspect opened fire. Officer Jillian M. Smith, who was 24 years old, received a fatal gunshot wound, but saved the child’s life. The suspect then chased the child’s mother into a bedroom where he murdered her before killing himself. It is for Officer Jillian M. Smith’s ultimate sacrifice on December 28, 2010, that we honor her with the Valor award posthumously. Officer Patrick R. Sirois Nolanville Police Department

On November 23, 2010, Nolanville Police Officer Patrick R. Sirois and his wife, who is employed at the Fort Hood Police Department, were spending time in Oklahoma for the Thanksgiving holiday. As they traveled, they came upon a stranded motorist with a truck hauling a trailer alongside the busy highway. Without a second thought, Officer Sirois stopped to assist the 28-year-old man. Patrick, a 5-year peace officer who had been serving the Nolanville Police Department as a reserve officer, put on his reflective jacket and was speaking to the driver when they noticed a car speeding towards them. Officer Sirois acted without hesitation, pushing the stranded man out of the way over the guardrail to safety. Before Officer Sirois could clear the area for his own safety, the vehicle collided with the stranded vehicle’s trailer, forcing it forward and pinning Officer Sirois between the truck and guardrail. Officer Sirois was extracted from the wreckage and transported to the hospital where he was pronounced dead. Officer Patrick R. Sirois’s quick response,

decisiveness, and immediate action to ensure the safety of another person without consideration for his own safety has earned him the Valor award posthumously.

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