Superior police honor serviceKeeping with its tradition of honoring exemplary service, the Superior Police Department held its annual law enforcement ceremony.
Keeping with its tradition of honoring exemplary service, the Superior Police Department held its annual law enforcement ceremony.
The ceremony honors officers as they begin their careers with the Superior Police Department, promotions and those who have shown exemplary performance in their duty to keep the city safe.
In addition to swearing in officers Adam Johnson, Marc Letendre and Adam Zielinski, and pinning badges on recently promoted sergeants Adam Poskozim and Thor Trone, numerous officers were recognized for their service to the community.
Police Chief Charles LaGesse said the following awards were given, although the awards were not read for officers who could not attend today's ceremony.
Officers Todd Maas and Jenn Orn were recipients of the Life Saving Award in connection with an incident Oct 21. Their efforts saved the life of a 22-year-old man who had stabbed himself in the neck with a knife.
The Distinguished Service Ribbon was awarded to Investigator Michael Jaszczak for his efforts following a vehicle crash Aug. 27. A driver suffered a medical emergency and crashed into a parked car. He was unconscious and endangered by a fire that started under the hood of his car.
Meritorious Conduct Certificates and Ribbons were awarded to officers Todd Carlson and Brad Esler for their work Sept 5 in apprehending two escapees from the Gordon Prison Camp and coordinating the initial response of other officers to begin a search for the third escapee.
Meritorious Conduct Certificate and Ribbon also was awarded to Officer Jim Olson for his work in making contact with a man who was threatening suicide with a rifle Aug 15. Olson negotiated over the phone with the man who he knew and successfully talked the man into coming out of his house and going for an evaluation.
Meritorious Conduct Certificates and Ribbons were awarded to Sgt. Bill Lear and officers Michael Bach, Patrick Carey, Brian Davis, Sean Holmgren and Joel Markon for their teamwork June 15 in coordinating and successfully taking into custody a suicidal man who had threatened to jump out a seventh floor window at the Androy Hotel.
Meritorious Conduct Certificates and Ribbons were awarded to Poskozim, Bach, Davis, and officers Chris Woolery, Eric Olson, Michael Kendall and Jeff Darst, and Communications Center Dispatchers Becky Farris and Ashley Engelman for their teamwork June 6 in tracking down and arresting one of two men involved in burglarizing a garage. A search for the second man led the officers through woods and swamps between Hammond and Hill avenues.
Investigators Jack Curphy and Bill Braman, received Meritorious Conduct Certificates and Ribbons for their work from August to October to compile information and connect it to a suspect involved in a series of daytime burglaries. One day after an arrest warrant was issued they received information about the suspect’s location in Duluth. They advised a Duluth Police Department investigator of this information and conducted surveillance in Duluth that led to the suspect being taken into custody without incident after a traffic stop. The suspect confessed to several of the burglaries in Superior and is suspected of committing several similar burglaries in the Duluth area.
Lear, Poskozim, Bach, Investigators Kirk Hill and Chris Moe, Officer Paul Winterscheidt earned Meritorious Conduct Certificates and Ribbons for their work in developing leads and obtaining information that led to the arrest of two men for a long series of copper thefts in Superior.
Meritorious Conduct Certificates and Ribbons were awarded to Sgt. Nicholas Alexander, Investigators Tom Champaigne, Curphy and Hill for their work developing leads and suspects, interviewing suspects and obtaining evidence in a robbery that occurred on Sept 1. The call was initially handled as a shooting, but that was eventually found to be false.
Douglas County Sheriff’s Department Deputy John Parenteau, a member of the Lake Superior Forensic Technology and Internet Crimes Against Children Taskforce received a Meritorious Conduct Certificate and Ribbon for his work in investigating child pornography possession incidents. In the last half of 2011, Parenteau located, identified and obtained evidence from five different people who were engaged in possessing and distributing child pornography.
Letters of commendation
Officer Erick Flood received a letter of commendation for , for responding to a “Check Welfare” call Jan 8. Flood was able to get a key to the residence and assisted with the entry to the house. A woman was found in the house, incoherent and was believed to be suffering from a diabetic emergency.
A letter of commendation was issued to Woolery for his work Sept. 15 following an armed robbery at Erbert’s and Gerbert’s. Woolery began processing the crime scene with some standard equipment used by patrol officers, which included DNA collection kits. Woolery photographed the scene, processed it for DNA evidence and eventually located a CO2 pistol that was used during the robbery.
Carlson received a letter of commendation for work May 3 in acting on the suspicious behavior of three people that led to identifying them as suspects in the ongoing investigation of copper thefts in the area. His contact with the three suspects was the result of an equipment violation he observed, prompting a traffic stop. Carlson also received a letter of commendation for work Sept 12 to follow up on the theft of a motorcycle from a residence in South Superior. Carlson obtained information on the identities of the suspects, conducted interviews that led to other locations and eventually was given permission to search a shed where the stolen motorcycle was located. He collected DNA evidence from the motorcycle and was able to return it to the owner.
Administration Assistant Donna Swanson received a letter of commendation for her continued work on the Citizen’s Academy. Her organization, professionalism and support of almost countless tasks that take place behind the scenes to make the academy a success
Several officers were also recognized for their efforts in traffic safety. They include Officer Gary Gothner who issued 307 traffic citations; Lear, who issued 301 citations; Eric Olson who issued 171 citations and made 23 arrests for operating while intoxicated; Officer Vern Holsclaw who issued 161 citations; Winterscheidt who made 14 operating while intoxicated arrests; and Orn who made 13 operating while intoxicated arrests.