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News Release

Media / For More Information Contact:
Sergeant Michael B. Webb
Kentucky State Police
Public Affairs Branch
Office (502) 782-1780

Kentucky State Police Announce Top Trooper, Detective, CVE Officer And Other Awards

Trooper Receives Governor's Medal of Valor Posthumously

Date of News Release: 05/24/2011

(Frankfort, Ky.) -- The Kentucky State Police announced the 2010 Trooper of the Year, Detective of the Year, Commercial Vehicle Officer of the Year, one Governor's Medal of Valor and other awards for acts of bravery, life-saving, professionalism and dedication to duty today at the Capital Plaza Hotel in Frankfort.

Smithland-resident Sr. Tpr. Thomas J. Williams was named 2010 Trooper of the Year. A nine-year veteran of the Kentucky State Police, he is assigned to KSP Post 1 in Mayfield.

During 2010, Tpr. Williams issued 2,026 citations including 777 for speeding, 312 for seatbelt violations and 11 for child restraint violations. He investigated 45 criminal cases and made 279 criminal arrests. He served 53 warrants relating to fugitives from justice and arrested 29 drivers on suspended licenses. He also conducted 87 commercial motor vehicle inspections which resulted in 94 citations.

As the leader of the Post 1 highway drug interdiction team, Williams seized $45,918 in cash and confiscated significant quantities of marijuana, prescription narcotics, heroin, methamphetamine, cocaine, synthetic marijuana and hallucinogenic mushrooms. He also produced four informants for street-level detectives.

A native of Princeton, Ky., Williams is a 1992 graduate of Livingston Central High School. He is the son of Tommy and Charlotte Williams of Smithland.

Beaver Dam-resident Det. Bryan W. Whittaker was named 2010 Detective of the Year. A 16-year veteran of the Kentucky State Police, he is assigned to KSP Post 16 in Henderson.

Whittaker had a busy year in 2010. He successfully located a city bookkeeper who had embezzled more than $11,000 from an Ohio Co. community and fled to Mississippi. He was able to solve a 2008 case by locating the victim's DNA on the undercarriage of the suspect's vehicle, resulting in a seven-year prison sentence. He solved two Ohio Co. bank robberies from 2007 by locating a suspect in Tennessee. The subject was extradited back to Kentucky and is now awaiting trial on multiple charges. He tracked two subjects in the theft of almost $32,000 from a convenience store in Union Co. and located them in Indiana. As a result of his investigation, other unsolved thefts were cleared in Daviess and McCracken counties and in Indiana.

Whittaker was also credited with locating a subject in another Ohio Co. convenience store armed robbery in Nashville, Tenn. The subject fled to Mississippi, committed a home invasion and was killed in a standoff with Mississippi authorities. He also investigated numerous sexual abuse and assault complaints, forgeries and burglaries while investigating four arson complaints as well.

A native of Hartford, Ky., Whittaker is a 1988 graduate of Ohio Co. High School and a 1994 graduate of Park College in Parkville, Mo. He is the son of Gerald and Charlotte Whittaker of Hartford, Ky.

Warsaw, Ky.-resident Officer Emily R. Horton was named the 2010 Jason Cammack Officer of the Year for the KSP Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Division. A three-year veteran of the division, Horton serves as a CVE Officer I in Region 3 based in Georgetown.

Officer Horton maintained a high level of activity in 2010, completing 1,050 vehicle inspections, issuing 528 commercial citations and 492 non-commercial citations and making 24 arrests. Her vehicle-out-of-service rate was 34.2 percent and driver-out-of-service rate was 4.5 percent.

KSP Post 5 in Campbellsburg also specifically requested Horton to assist in two drug suspect roundups and a drug interdiction detail. She also assisted in the transition of the Boone Co. and Kenton Co. weigh facilities to new and upgraded equipment and acted as a background investigator for CVE officer applicants.

A native of Fort Meyers, Fla., Horton is a 2003 graduate of Owen Co. High School and a 2007 graduate of the University of Louisville. She is the daughter of Karen Horton of Owenton.

The Governor's Medal of Valor was presented to the late Tpr. Joe Ward, of Post 2 in Madisonville, posthumously. It is the highest honor that can be bestowed upon an officer of the agency for conspicuous heroism in the line of duty under circumstances of extreme personal hazard. It is awarded only by order of the Governor of the Commonwealth. The honor stems from a 1973 incident on the Pennyrile Parkway in Christian County when Tpr. Ward sacrificed his life while pushing a subject out of the path of an oncoming vehicle.

The KSP Citation for Bravery, an honor bestowed on officers of the agency who perform acts of bravery, without regard for personal risk, of clear and obvious peril and clearly above and beyond the call or risk of ordinary duty, was presented to:

Sgt. Jacqualine Pickrell, Post 10, Harlan
Sgt. Jennifer Sandlin, Post 9, Pikeville

Trooper's Medals, awarded to officers who perform life-saving acts under extraordinary circumstances, were presented to:

Detective William C. Braden, II, Post 2, Madisonville
Detective Robert M. Harris, Post 12, Frankfort
Sgt. Marion Todd Jones, Drug Enforcement/Special Investigations West, Bowling Green.
Tpr. Seth A. Lee, Post 4, Elizabethtown

The Citation for Meritorious Service with "V" Device for Valor, bestowed on officers of the agency who distinguish themselves by an act of courage performed under more than ordinary circumstances, was presented to:

Tpr. Jason Lanham, Post 3, Bowling Green
Tpr. Adam Morgan, Post 3, Bowling Green
Tpr. Jeremy Smith, Post 3, Bowling Green
Tpr. Robert R. Purdy, Recruitment Branch, Frankfort
Tpr. Joshua S. Lawson, Electronic Crime Branch, Frankfort
Sgt. Lonnie W. Bell, Post 16, Henderson
Tpr. Eric M. Dilback, Post 16, Henderson
Thomas M. Hampton, Jr., Post 16, Henderson
Tpr. Timothy A. Payne, Post 16, Henderson
Lt. Brooks Young, Post 16, Henderson
Tpr. Jeffrey Browning, Post 10, Harlan

The Citation for Meritorious Service, bestowed on officers of the agency who distinguish themselves by an act of meritorious service of such exceptional character that it contributed to the success of a major command or endeavor, was presented to:

Tpr. First Class Norman Chaffins, Jr., Post 4, Elizabethtown

Eighteen troopers were named Trooper of the Year at the post, branch or division level. They include:

Sr. Tpr. Thomas J. Williams, Post 1, Mayfield
Tpr. Jeffrey M. Ayres, Post 2, Madisonville
Master Trooper Terry A. Alexander, Post 3, Bowling Green
Tpr. Brad A. Riley, Post 4, Elizabethtown
Tpr. Justin E. Sams, Post 5, Campbellsburg
Sr. Tpr. Timothy A. Vinal, Post 6, Dry Ridge
Tpr. John S. Felder, Post 7, Richmond
Tpr. Endre I. Samu, Post 8, Morehead
Tpr. First Class Edward R. Crum, Post 9, Pikeville
Sr. Tpr. Tyson E. Lawson, Post 10, Harlan
Tpr. Charles J. Senters, Post 11, London
Tpr. Edward R. Whitworth, Post 12, Frankfort
Tpr. Issac T. Whitaker, Post 13, Hazard
Tpr. First Class Anthony E. Burch, Post 14, Ashland
Tpr. Logan R. Richardson, Post 15, Columbia
Tpr. Gregory W. Newman, Post 16, Henderson
Tpr. Jason G. Denny, Special Operations Branch
Sr. Tpr. Shawn E. Darby, Administrative Division

Nineteen troopers were named Detective of the Year at the post, branch or division level. They include:

Det. Donald R. Bowman, Jr., Post 1, Mayfield
Det. Leonard S. Smith, Post 2, Madisonville
Det. James C. Winn, Post 3, Bowling Green
Det. Jonathan L. Vaughn, Post 4, Elizabethtown
Det. Steven G. Goodale, Post 5, Campbellsburg
Det. Wilmer A. Gatson, Post 6, Dry Ridge
Arson Investigator Patrick D. Alford, Post 7, Richmond
Det. Donnie D. McGraw, Post 8, Morehead
Det. Kevin J. Newsome, Post 9, Pikeville
Det. Keith A. Saylor, Post 10, Harlan
Det. Elbert M. Bowling, Jr., Post 11, London
Det. Elisha L. Morris, Post 12, Frankfort
Det. Douglas A. Gay, Post 13, Hazard
Det. Michael J. Murriell, Post 14, Ashland
Det. Bramlett J. Burton, Post 15, Columbia
Det. Bryan W. Whittaker, Post 16, Henderson
Det. Scott D. McIntosh, East Drug Enforcement
Det. Bradley E. Harper, West Drug Enforcement
Det. John R. Morgan, Electronic Crime Branch

Seven CVE officers were named Officer of the Year at the region level, including:

CVE Officer Kelly Drew, Region 1, Henderson
CVE Officer Brandon Ford, Region 2, Louisville
CVE Officer Emily Horton, Region 3, Georgetown
CVE Officer Steven Douglas, Region 4, London
CVE Officer Randy Ferrell, Region 5, Morehead
CVE Officer Kenny Johnson, Region 6, Pikeville
CVE Officer Charles Smith, Programs Branch, Frankfort

The 2010 KSP Safe Driving Awards, which recognize the KSP post and Commercial Vehicle Enforcement region with the highest average number of safe driving miles between assessable accidents, was presented to KSP Post 4 in Elizabethtown and CVE Region 4 in London. Post 4 had a record of 1,479,395 miles with zero assessable collisions. Region 4 had a record of 965,960 miles with only one assessable collision.

The KSP Commissioner's Award, which is bestowed on civilians who distinguish themselves by performing a life-saving act or a meritorious achievement that significantly contributed to the success of a major Kentucky State police endeavor, was presented to:

Michael Nethery, Shelbyville, Ky.
Frank Jones, of Richmond, Ky.

Nethery received the award for helping an off-duty trooper apply CPR to a woman at a restaurant in Waddy, Ky. in February of 2011. Jones received the award for pulling a woman from Hubble Lake in Lincoln Co. in April of 2011.

The KSP Citation for Meritorious Achievement, the agency's highest civilian award bestowed upon individuals who performed an extraordinary act of service or heroism in direct support of an officer of the agency engaged in the official performance of duty, was presented to:

Cpl. Nick Roby, Daviess Co. Sheriff's Office.

Roby received the award for helping KSP troopers rescue two minor children from a residence where an armed man had barricaded himself and was shooting at law enforcement officers in Dec. of 2008.

KSP Commissioner Rodney Brewer praised all of the honorees. "We salute all those who have chosen a life of service. They make a real difference in the lives of the citizen's of Kentucky every day."

Contact Information for the Kentucky State Police

Kentucky State Police
919 Versailles Road | Frankfort, KY 40601

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