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Keyword: awards

On April 29, the Baltimore County Police Foundation honored 18 sworn officers and two civilians for exceptional service at its annual awards ceremony. The honorees included Officer Amy Sorrells Caprio of Precinct 8 Parkville for her courageous and selfless actions she displayed when she responded to a call for a suspicious vehicle in a Perry Hall community. Officer Amy Caprio was posthumously awarded the Valor Award.

Master of Ceremonies Stan Stovall hosted the awards dinner at The Valley Mansion, 594 Cranbrook Road in Hunt Valley. The event began at 6 p.m. for a meet and greet, dinner was at 7:30 p.m. and the awards presentation began at 8:15 p.m. County Executive Johnny Olszewski, Chief Terrence B. Sheridan and Stephen P. Somers, Foundation President, presented the awards. The benediction and invocation were offered by the Reverend Herbert Watson.

The following personnel received the 2019 Baltimore County Police Foundation Awards.

  • Rookie of the Year – Officer Michael J. Flaherty, Precinct 12 Dundalk
    As a young officer, Officer Flaherty shows uncommon calm and is willing to take a leadership role in stressful situations. Flaherty’s traffic stops led to the seizure of significant amounts of drugs, cash and weaponry. His dedication to the profession is truly admirable.
  • Community Service – Officer Shawn "Spike" McElfish, Precinct 12 Dundalk
    While Officer McElfish has spent his 23 years at the Dundalk Precinct chasing the bad guys, he is also responsible for bringing kids and cops together on the baseball diamond. Baseball camps were held to inspire trust in the system. Some of the children only met officers in bad situations; this was a chance for cops and kids to interact in a positive way. A former minor league baseball player for the Cleveland Indians, he used his experience as a baseball player to help kids learn skills such as leadership. His success with the baseball clinics has led to football camps in the fall.
  • Crime Prevention – Lieutenant John L. Rossbach (Ret.), Precinct 1 Wilkens
    Lieutenant Rossbach spent 33 years serving the people of Baltimore County. Over that time, his attention to the business community has made doing business in the Arbutus area a safer place for employees and customers. Lt. Rossbach knew that most of the incidents happened in the late night hours and adjusted his work schedule to accommodate it and led his officers in the fight to make it a safe place for all.
  • Distinguished Contribution to the Profession – Deborah Street and Kathy Wallace, Office of the Chief
    Debbie Street and Kathy Wallace have a combined 60 years of service to the department. In that time, people within the department learned they were the "go to" people for information. Their pleasant, professional demeanor and knowledge of the workings of the Chief’s Office make it clear why they continue to be an integral part of the department. One of their biggest assignments is planning the annual Police Foundation Awards Dinner. It runs smoothly every year due to their attention to detail. There are many pieces to the puzzle to make this event-of-the-year appear seamless. Their hard work has made the awards ceremony grow in the years since its inception. Debbie Street and Kathy Wallace more than deserve the Distinguished Contribution to the Profession Award.
  • Exceptional Performance – Officer Rodney Kenion II, Precinct 8 Parkville
    Officer Rodney Kenion started with the department in 2002 and has proven to be a great asset. In one case, while investigating a burglary in which the suspect was establishing residency in a vacant house, Kenion spoke to the owner of the property. He was told the man was living in the house without permission. Kenion discovered the “tenant” was selling drugs from the location. The man was arrested and Kenion obtained a warrant to search the house. The search produced cash, drugs and two handguns. Kenion’s follow up brought the case to a successful conclusion. One investigation led to the closing of two cases.
  • Exceptional Group Performance – Precinct 12 Dundalk – Investigative Services Team: Lieutenant Christopher P. Morgan, Sergeant Kimberly A. DeFelice, Corporal Christopher P. Mazan, Detective Michael J. Copenhaver, Detective David L. Dillard, Detective Matthew H. Horney, Detective Justin C. Serio, Detective Anthony Shelton Jr., Detective Jason M. Stricklin, Officer Shawn "Spike" McElfish, and Officer Gary G. Huth
    The Investigative Services Team, IST, takes on various types of cases. In 2018, IST investigated 168 cases, made 238 arrests and cleared 147 cases. Compared to 2017, $50,000 more in property was recovered, 13 more firearms were recovered, 32 more search warrants were executed, and 25 more arrest warrants were obtained. The cases IST investigated involved several crime trends and violent offenses. To achieve their goal of keeping the streets safe, the detectives used various tactics and methods to apprehend the offenders. In one case, the team solved three armed street robberies that happened within a half hour of each other – one involving a shot being fired at a victim, one involving an armed assault, and one involving a kidnapping case in which the victim was struck by the suspect with a military-style rifle. Though the cases were complicated, IST’s esprit de corps brought a successful outcome to all three cases.
  • Valor – Officer Bishop A. Elder, Precinct 4 Pikesville and Officer Myles T. Hilliard, Precinct 9 White Marsh
    On July 22, 2018, Officers Elder and Hilliard responded to a disturbance at an apartment in Pikesville. A caller told them a family member was drunk and punching holes in the walls and he was also fighting with other family members. The officers went up the stairwell, Hilliard then Elder, and when they reached the second floor, the suspect opened the door and went after Hilliard. The suspect was armed with a large kitchen knife and did not respond to the officer’s commands to stop. When he pushed Hilliard in the chest, Hilliard took a step back, then Elder pushed the suspect against the wall.

This altercation continued as officers kept giving verbal commands and the suspect continued to resist arrest. The suspect also continued swinging the knife wildly in the air. Finally, officers contained the suspect and arrested him. No one was seriously injured except for the laceration on Elder’s arm. Their courage and bravery most probably saved the lives of family and others.

  • Valor – Officer Amy Sorrells Caprio, Precinct 8 Parkville
    Officer Amy Sorrells Caprio graduated from the police academy in 2014. Early on she was seen as a good officer and leadership material. While at Precinct 11 Essex, she was selected to be a Field Training Officer, making her responsible for the training and mentoring of new recruits. She transferred to the Parkville Precinct in 2017 with the determination to increase her knowledge of the communities within Baltimore County.

On May 21, 2018, Officer Caprio responded to a call for a suspicious vehicle in a Perry Hall community within the precinct. Another call confirmed that a burglary was taking place and four unknown suspects associated with the stolen Jeep Wrangler were involved. Officer Caprio found the Jeep and followed it into the cul-de-sac. When she arrived, the Jeep was facing her. She exited her car with her weapon drawn, then ordered the suspect out of the Jeep. The suspect appeared to be exiting the vehicle per her orders. As she approached, the suspect jumped back into the vehicle and aimed the car at the officer. Officer Caprio fired one shot into the vehicle in an attempt to stop him. The driver accelerated toward the officer, fatally striking her.

Officer Caprio was killed in the line-of-duty. She was presented the Valor Award for her courage and selfless actions during this incident.

About the Police Foundation

The awards program began in 1980 as a way to recognize the Police Department employees for outstanding performance and to strengthen the relationship between the business community and the Department. The Baltimore County Police Foundation contributes resources, including seed money and in-kind services, for the development of new projects.

All members of the department, both professional staff and sworn, are eligible for nomination.

The Baltimore County Fire Department's annual Commendations Ceremony will be held tomorrow, March 26, 7 p.m., at Loch Raven High School, 1212 Cowpens Ave., Towson. The ceremony honors first responders and civilians who have performed exceptionally over the past 12 months.


  • A Randallstown area boy will receive the Department's highest civilian award, the Citizen's Medal of Honor, for "heroic life-saving efforts, with serious risk of injury, during a May 27, 2018 dwelling fire in the unit block of Charleswood Ct, 21207." The boy, who was 9 at the time of the fire, helped save his grandparents from the fire. He is expected to attend.
  • Four BCoFD members will receive the Department's third-highest award for public safey personnel, the Bronze Star.

    Two members of the Texas Fire Station's Urban Search and Rescue Team are honored with the Bronze Star for their work at a July 25, 2018 swiftwater rescue in the Reese area of Carroll County, Maryland, in which they fought a swollen, fast-moving stream to reach a person clinging to a tree.

    Two members will receive the Bronze Star for rescuing an unconscious woman from a December 15, 2018 apartment fire in the unit block of Shipping Place, 21222.
  • Departmental Unit Citations will be given to personnel involved on two calls involving crashes that critically injured Fire Department members -- a November 30, 2017 motor vehicle crash at Falls and Stringtown roads, 21152; and a September 29, 2018 motorcycle crash at Woodlawn and Linus drives, 21207.

Three civilians and about 160 public safety personnel will receive awards.

County Executive John Olszewski Jr. and Acting Fire Chief Jennifer L. Aubert-Utz are scheduled to attend.

The Fire Department Commendations Board, comprising career and volunteer personnel, considers nominations for awards based on specific criteria including intelligent decision making, skill, bravery and risk

Last night the Baltimore County Police Department presented awards to officers and county residents as part of an annual awards ceremony.

The department also honored the Reverend James Lane, a former Baltimore County Chaplain, for his 40 years of service to the community.

The event was held at Goucher College, 1021 Dulaney Valley Road, Towson, 21204.

The departmental awards are given to officers who have performed extraordinarily over the past 12 months. The Baltimore County Police Department Awards Review Board spends months reviewing nominations based on departmental standard criteria.

Awards are presented to officers in the following categories:

Medal of Honor: This is the highest and most prestigious Departmental Award. It is awarded to persons who, with the knowledge of risk, found themselves in a life-threatening situation, and intelligently committed themselves to dangers. The award was presented posthumously to Officer Amy Sorrells Caprio.

Silver Star: This is the second highest Departmental Award. It recognizes officers who demonstrate valor, courage, intelligence and bravery over and above that normally demanded and expected.

  • Corporal Mathew Gonzalez
  • Detective Anthony Armetta
  • Detective Robert Easter
  • Detective Jeffrey Lauer
  • Detective Jonathan Trenary
  • Officer Gail Wickless

Commendation: This is the third highest Departmental Award. It is awarded to officers who display courage and devotion to duty above that normally required; or who display intelligence during unusual circumstances; or who demonstrate initiative in solving a crime; or one who, under certain circumstances, arrest an armed and dangerous person.

  • Captain Wes J. Fischer
  • Captain Jeffrey C. Hartman
  • Captain David P. Trivett
  • Sergeant Brandon A. Branham
  • Sergeant W. Shawn Havens
  • Sergeant Bruce E. Markwordt
  • Sergeant Brian S. Martin
  • Sergeant Steven M. Longo
  • Corporal Christopher D. Cullip
  • Corporal Patrick M. Wilhelm
  • Detective Stephanie Brooks
  • Detective Jennifer C. Ende
  • Detective Joseph P. Grant
  • Detective Scott D. Kilpatrick
  • Detective Jaime R. Layhew
  • Detective Jason Metz
  • Detective Ernest L. Moore
  • Detective Andrew L. Muska
  • Detective David L. Phillips
  • Detective Michael J. Romano
  • Detective Alexa H. Smith
  • Detective Amy M. Taylor
  • Detective Christopher M. Toland
  • Officer Brian D. Beckford
  • Officer Michael R. Deremeik
  • Officer Ryan M. Dickel
  • Officer David L. Dillard
  • Officer Steven C. Dix
  • Officer William A. Downs
  • Officer William M. Flaherty
  • Officer Jasmine R. Fleet
  • Officer Jeffrey S. Gale
  • Officer Trevor C. Grove
  • Officer Andrew R. Gwinn
  • Officer Jessica L. Harris
  • Officer Victoria J. Hawkins
  • Officer Darnell L. Isaac
  • Officer James A. Koscielski
  • Officer Benjamin J. Kummerlowe
  • Officer Brandon G. Langley
  • Officer Kevin W. Lehnert
  • Officer Rashad L. Mitchell
  • Officer Joseph V. Murray
  • Officer John C. Myers
  • Officer David C. Nilsen
  • Officer Sidney L. Pierce
  • Officer Hector M. Pomales
  • Officer Jeremy R. Price
  • Officer Fahim M. Rafiq
  • Officer Carlyle S. Riche
  • Officer John K. Rogers
  • Officer Kenneth C. Shields
  • Officer Kathleen M. Strickler
  • Officer Timothy N. Thulion
  • Officer Timothy R. Usher
  • Officer David D. Vandergriff
  • Officer Evan T. Vicarini
  • Officer Antonio A. Yanes

Emergency Service: The Emergency Service Award is awarded for an effort to save a human life.

  • Sergeant Richard T. Delea
  • Detective Deryck J. Lee
  • Detective John P. Sullivan
  • Detective Isaac M. Thorn
  • Officer Stephanie M. Amer
  • Trooper Tyreze Braxton (Maryland State Police)
  • Officer David P. Crum
  • Officer John J. Dill
  • Officer Jasmine R. Fleet
  • Officer Mason S. Gwinn
  • Officer Gregory J. Meyers
  • Officer Roy M. Mitchell
  • Officer Patrick W. Murphy
  • Officer Jeffery S. Parsons
  • Officer Andrew M. Peters
  • Officer Kenneth L. Pitts
  • Officer Philip A. Sears
  • Officer Ashley K. Vandervall

Awards were presented to citizens in the following categories:

Citizen’s Award of Valor: Presented to a citizen who provided courageous assistance, particularly in which a criminal is seized and detained until the arrival of a police officer.

  • Jasmine White

Distinguished Citizen’s Award: Presented to a citizen who rendered valuable assistance to Department member.

  • Amanda Briton
  • Lassell Burger
  • Cavelia Duvall
  • Cynthia Dwyer
  • Joseph Dwyer
  • Adam Friedman
  • Jose Reyes
  • Erin Upton
  • Steven Weis
Revised June 27, 2017