Maryland-National Capital Park Police holds Awards Ceremony
| Community and Media Services|
|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE||August 6, 2012|
Members from the Montgomery County Division of the Maryland-National Capital Park Police were honored during an Awards Ceremony held at Brookside Gardens on August 1, 2012. Dignitaries including Al Carr, Maryland Delegate for District 18, Councilmember Phil Andrews, and Sara Rosen from U.S. Congressman Chris Van Hollen’s office were present to honor the recipients. Councilmember Phil Andrews praised the outstanding service the Park Police provide for the residents of Montgomery County, Maryland, and the professionalism of the Division. Marye Wells-Harley, Vice-Chair of the Montgomery Planning Board, and Elizabeth Hewlett, Vice-Chair of the Prince George’s County Planning Board, also made remarks.
Director of Parks Mary Bradford said, “This year marked the sixth year that our parks system has been named a finalist in the Gold Medal Award for Excellence in Park and Recreation Management. The Park Police play a critical role in helping us achieve that kind of national recognition and ensuring residents can enjoy safe parks and facilities.”
Four Officers received Bronze Stars for performing acts of valor intended to save a human life. On May 4, 2011, Officers Johnny Beason and Joshua Scully encountered a woman who was threatening to kill herself. The Officers were able to safely place her into custody and get her to the hospital for treatment. On September 25, 2011, Officers Emily Murphy and David Simonetti were sent out on a call for a subject that was suicidal and was possibly armed with a handgun. Officer Murphy tracked the subject down into a local park and she and Officer Simonetti were able to subdue the man and get him help. A search of his bag revealed a loaded .44 revolver, electrical cord, and a bottle of an unknown liquid.
Officer Brian Paulsen received the Patrol Officer Special Recognition Award for his excellent patrol work on August 22, 2011. While on patrol at Cabin John Regional Park, Officer Paulsen found a subject in an isolated part of the park after the park was closed. Upon further investigation, the vehicle was loaded with fireworks and had been fitted with a turret and multiple tubes from which fireworks were to be shot. The subject, Glenn Neff, had planned to ignite the fireworks at the National Mall the next day in protest with issues that he had with the banking industry. Thanks to Officer Paulsen’s quick actions and dedication to his job, a potentially major event was averted and ended peacefully.
Sergeant Shibu Philipose and Officer Charles Spitzner were recognized for their police work which led to the apprehension of a suspect related to several open sexual assault cases in the Wheaton and Aspen Hill areas. On March 12, 2011, Officer Spitzner observed several males in the wooded area of Matthew Henson Park acting suspiciously. When the subjects realized Officer Spitzner had noticed them, they quickly walked away. Investigating further, Officer Spitzner found there had been drinking in the area and called for backup. During the subsequent inquiry of the suspects, Sergeant Philipose recognized one of the subjects from a composite of a suspect from an outstanding Montgomery County case. Montgomery County Police Homicide/Sex Department was notified and these actions eventually led to the positive identification of the suspect by the victim.
Acting Chief Antonio DeVaul said, “I am very proud of the achievements of our Division this year, and especially the members of our team who were recognized with awards.” He thanked everyone for their support of the Park Police, and congratulated everyone who received awards. He acknowledged the family members who were present at the ceremony and thanked all the Park Police officers, civilians and volunteers for their dedication, commitment and service to our community.
|Picture from left to right: Assistant Chief Darin Uhrig, Maryland Delegate Al Carr, Officer Joshua Scully, Officer Johnny Beason, and Acting Chief Antonio DeVaul|