News Release

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TFC Jay Thomas
Public Affairs Officer
Kentucky State Police
Post 1, Mayfield
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Pictured below are Post One honorees receiving their awards from KSP Commissioner Pat Simpson and KSP Deputy Commissioner Colonel Tim Hazlette.

Trooper Robert Hatcher

Trooper George Bell

Sergeant Eric Walker

Post One Troopers Honored at Annual KSP Awards

(Hickory, KY) -  Two Troopers and one Sergeant form Post One were honored Wednesday at the annual Kentucky State Police awards ceremony in Lexington, KY.

Sergeant Eric Walker and Trooper George Bell received the KSP Citation for Bravery. On October 22, 2002 a bank robbery suspect was able to disarm a Ballard County deputy of his firearm and hold three officers at gunpoint while she attempted to free her accomplice, who was also in the custody at the Ballard County Sheriff's Department.

Sergeant Walker, with total disregard for his own safety, quickly determined the seriousness and volatility of the situation and began to negotiate with the suspect.

Trooper Bell immediately entered the Sheriff's Office, taking a position of concealment behind an open interior door less than four feet from the suspect.

Both Sergeant Walker and Trooper Bell utilized their years of training and experience to judge the suspect's commitment to the actions she was taking. Both officers allowed negotiations to de-escalate the situation to a level where direct action could be taken to arrest the suspect.

The suspect, by her actions, had placed law enforcement officers from the FBI, the Kentucky State Police, and the Ballard County Sheriff's Department in a situation that could likely have resulted in serious physical injury or death.

Sergeant Walker, while being held at gunpoint, demonstrated great self-control and restraint in timing his negotiations, all the while monitoring the suspect and observing her finger was not committed to the trigger of the firearm. When the suspect began to surrender her weapon, Trooper Bell made a swift and decisive move to secure the suspect with total disregard for his own safety. The suspect was taken into custody without further incident.

Sergeant Eric Walker is a nine-year veteran of the Kentucky State Police. Sergeant Walker began his career in 1994 as a trooper at the Henderson Post, where he also served as a Street Level Detective and worked in Criminal Investigations. He transferred to the Mayfield Post in 1999 when he was promoted to Sergeant. His duties at Post One include Operations Sergeant, Administrative Sergeant and his current assignment is Detective Sergeant. Sergeant Walker and his wife Marcia reside in Symsonia. They have four children.

Trooper George Bell is a fourteen-year veteran of the Kentucky State Police and Post One. He is currently assigned to Hickman County. Along with this Citation for Bravery, Trooper Bell has earned the Commissioners Commendation and one other Citation for Bravery. Trooper Bell resides in Clinton with his wife Lori and one son.

Trooper Robert Hatcher was also recognized at the ceremony as Post One's Trooper of the Year. Trooper Hatcher earned this title for this hard work and dedication and was elected by his co-workers to represent Post One as Trooper of the Year.

Trooper Hatcher is an 8-year veteran of the Kentucky State Police and Post One. Trooper Hatcher is currently assigned to McCracken County. He is a collision reconstructionist, field training officer and is certified to install child restraint seats. Robert, his wife Stephanie and their three children reside in Kevil.

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