2009/2010 Awards and Recognition

On July 23, 2010, the Paducah Police Department was pleased to hold its first-ever Awards Ceremony to honor officers and civilians who have risen above their routine duties and responsibilities and provided exceptional service to the department and the citizens of Paducah.  Click Awards and Recognition Criteria for a list of the possible awards and the criteria used in judging.

For privacy, the names of victims and the names of the recipients of the Civilian Service Award have been omitted. 

Awards and Recognition Recipients for 2009/2010

Life Saving Award 


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Officer Travis Counts

On March 12, 2009, Officer Counts was dispatched to a welfare check at South 28th Street and Broadway.  A citizen reported that a female driver apparently was incoherent.  When Officer Counts arrived, he found the woman unconscious in the driver's seat of her vehicle.  The vehicle was rolling forward toward the intersection.  Officer Counts broke the vehicle's rear driver's side window with his baton, reached in, and unlocked the driver's door, and climbed into the vehicle and put it into park.  It was later determined the woman's blood sugar level was critically low.  Officer Counts received a Life Saving Award for his actions.

Officer Wes Orazine and Detective Justin Crowell

On April 1, 2009, officers were dispatched to a fight between two men in the 1200 block of Park Avenue.  When officers arrived, they found a man who had been stabbed in the heart.  Officer Orazine and Det. Crowell performed CPR on the man until emergency medical personnel arrived.  The man died a short time later at the hospital.

Captain Mark Roberts

On April 17, 2009, officers were dispatched to a shooting.  When they arrived, officers found a man lying in the roadway in the 2600 block of Mildred Street, shot in the head.  Capt. Roberts performed CPR on the man until emergency medical personnel arrived.  The man died a short time later at the hospital.

Assistant Chief Stacey Grimes

In late August 2009, Asst. Chief Grimes and his family were dining at Rafferty's restaurant when a fellow diner choked on a piece of meat.  Asst. Chief Grimes performed CPR on the man until emergency medical personnel arrived on the scene, effectively saving his life.

Captain David White and Officer Michael Simak

On September 17, 2009, officers were dispatched to a reported shooting.  When they arrived, they found a man who had been shot in the chest with a shotgun slug.  Capt. White and Officer Simak performed CPR on the man until emergency medical personnel arrived.  The man died a short time later at the hospital.

Acting Captain Jason Merrick and Officer James Davis

On March 13, 2010, officers were dispatched to a fight at Fat Moe's restaurant and bar, 902 Broadway.  A male employee collapsed as officers were arriving on the scene.  The man was not breathing and had no pulse when Officer Davis and Acting Capt. Merrick began performing CPR.  They continued CPR for five minutes until Paducah firefighters arrived and "shocked" the man with an automated external defibrillator.  Firefighters shocked the man three times before continuing CPR, eventually transferring his care over to Mercy ambulance personnel.  Acting Captain Merrick and Officer Davis provided an invaluable link in the man's chain of survival and are credited with the first steps in saving his life.

Officer Matt Reed and Officer Nathan Antonites

On April 29, 2010, dispatchers alerted officers to a reckless driver on Clark's River Road.  A few minutes later, dispatchers reported the vehicle had wrecked at 21st Street and old Mayfield Road.  Officers Reed and Antonites arrived on the scene to find a man sitting on the ground.  Within minutes, the man laid down and stopped breathing.  The officers began performing CPR and continued until Paducah firefighters arrived and took over.  Physicians at Western Baptist Hospital told the man's son that had it not been for the officers' beginning CPR when they did, the man would not have lived. 

Chief's Award

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Detective Sergeant Will Gilbert

In October 2004, Det. Sgt. Gilbert took over command of the department's bomb squad.  He has devoted countless hours to the squad, both on duty and off, and has helped mold the squad into one of the finest in the Commonwealth of Kentucky.  Additionally, Det. Sgt. Gilbert has been instrumental in acquiring nearly $725,000 in grants to purchase bomb robots, protective suits, and other equipment.

Special Recognition


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Records Clerk Melissa Green

Records Clerk Green received an Administrative Commendation for identifying, creating, and helping to implement a new and more efficient process for the department's citation logs.  Her suggested change streamlined the process of logging issued citations and eliminated two steps from the previous procedure.

2010 Employee of the Year

Officer Linda Hodgson

Officer Linda Hodgson was introduced as the 2010 Employee of the Year at a ceremony held February 3, 2011.  Officer Hodgson was nominated by her co-workers for her outstanding service and contributions during the prior year.  Among other things, Officer Hodgson was instrumental in planning and preparing for the FOP's golf scramble and golf ball drop fund-raiser which raised more than $14,000 for projects such as Christmas Cops which she organized.  For a family that didn't qualify due to the age of the children, Officer Hodgson used her own money to buy them Christmas presents. Officer Hodgson has been with the Paducah Police Department since December 2003.  Also nominated were Det. Sgt. Brian Laird, Sgt. George Johnson, Det. Nathan Young, Officer Lofton Rowley, and Officer Kevin Crider. 

Service Commendation

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Detective Sergeant Brian Laird and Investigative Assistant Malinda Elrod

In January 2010, the department hosted a four-day training course offered by John E. Reid and Associates, the internationally recognized Reid School of Interviewing and Interrogation.  Det. Sgt. Laird first suggested hosting the training to save travel costs.  He knew that the department could earn free spots in the class to register more of our officers by recruiting attendees from surrounding agencies.  Det. Sgt. Laird and Investigative Assistant Elrod began advertising the class and registering participants.  Due to the efforts of these two employees, the department was able to send, at no cost, eight officers more than originally budgeted, saving the department approximately $8000.

Civilian Service Award

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For Privacy-Names are Withheld

On March 31, 2010, a business on Hinkleville Road was robbed and two robbers fled on foot.  Two teenage citizens saw officers responding with emergency equipment activated and saw two men running and getting into a parked car on Friedman Lane.  They assumed the men were the reason for the commotion.  They followed the car and called 911 from a cellular phone.  They were able to provide accurate and timely information, which was passed on to responding officers.  Their assistance helped the department apprehend two suspects that night and a third suspect a few days later.  These teenagers could have easily gone about their business and no one would have known the difference.  However, they displayed character and performed an outstanding service in the face of unknown peril, thereby aiding the department in solving a serious crime.

Ice Storm 2009 Awards

On January 26 through February 4, 2009 the region experienced a devastating ice storm.  The area had not experienced a storm of this magnitude in 100 years.   The response by the Paducah Police Department involved more than 70 personnel in addition to more than 15 civilian personnel and volunteers.  There were more than 2600 overtime hours worked during the response and recovery time.  The equipment used during the response included more than 70 police vehicles, one command center, five generators, and 3 chainsaws responding to approximately 15 department requests.  The Paducah Police Department had 15 mutual aid requests with 38 officers working in five counties including Hickman, Calloway, Crittenden, McCracken, and Livingston.  Approximately 300 meals were fed to department employees and civilian helpers with approximately 100 meals and water distributed to local citizens.  The department participated in the first round of door-to-door checks on citizens.  The checks were completed in approximately 2.5 days with assistance from the Paducah Fire Department, Parks Services Department, Volunteers in Police Service (VIPS), and other volunteers.  There were 1519 calls for service received at E-911 between January 26 and February 4.

Ice Storm Awards were presented to personnel who worked during the crisis.  The award recognizes the service provided during this time frame.  Officers were on 12-hour shifts with no days off.

Ice Storm Award Recipients
Interim Chief Sandy L. Joslyn  Ptl. Paul Stevenson Ptl. Jarrett M. Woodruff
Asst. Chief Stacey R. Grimes Ptl. Cynthia Neihoff Ptl. Anthony B. Hughes
Capt. Brandon Barnhill Ptl. Scotty Davis Ptl. Christopher L. Baxter
Capt. Donald G. Hodgson Ptl. James E. Davis Ptl. Christopher A. Bolton
Capt. Mark Alan Roberts Det. Matthew F. Wentworth Ptl. Anthony J. Copeland
Capt. David R. White Ptl. Wesley Orazine Ptl. Michael A. Rigdon
Capt. Shawn D. Maxie Ptl. Travis Counts Ptl. Corey L. Willenborg
Sgt. Jason Merrick Ptl. Jason Montgomery Ptl. Christopher S. Hardison
Sgt. George F. Johnson Det. Michael Wentworth Ptl. Kevin E. Crider
Sgt. William Gilbert Ptl. Justin Canup Ptl. Ryan W. Conn
Sgt. Brian Laird Det. Matthew Smith Ptl. Timothy C. Hopkins
Sgt. Wesley Kimbler Ptl. Michael Redmon Ptl. Joshua D. Bryant
Sgt. Steven Smith Ptl. Melissa G. Dillon Ptl. Nathan A. Antonites
Sgt. Robert Hefner Ptl. Linda C. Hodgson Ptl. Matthew M. Reed
Sgt. Joseph A. Hayes Ptl. Gretchen L. Morgan Ptl. Nathan C. Jaimet
Ptl. Wendell Rene Long Ptl. Dana L. Dobson Ptl. Jason D. Hicks
Det. Robert L. Estes Jr. Ptl. James A. Robbins Ptl. Christopher D. Fearon
Ptl. Brent A. Obermark Det. Troy D. Turner Ptl. Keith A. Thuline
Det. John R. Tolliver Ptl. Justin M. Rundles Ptl. Kevin L Collins
Ptl. Michael C. Simak Ptl. Lofton Rowley Jr. Recruit Officer Trevor N. Youngblood
Ptl. Brian Kopischke Det. Justin P. Crowell Ptl. Derik A. Perry
Ptl. Kevin Neal Ptl. Patrick R. Clark Recruit Officer Matthew C.E. Scheer
Det. Nathan Young