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Employee/Officer of the Month :: 2007

September 6th, 2007 by Cpl Edward Koczan

The South Bend Police Department recognizes employees monthly for outstanding service or duty. The purpose of the Employee of the Month Award is to recognize officers or civilian employees on our department who have demonstrated actions that are noted by supervisors, or citizens from both a professional law enfocement position, and in support of our community policing efforts with our city citizens.

We will present this as a monthly feature as awards are noted and commended.

May 2007: Sergeant Juan Lora

Sgt. Juan Lora received an “Exemplary Service Award” for excellent police work leading up to a successful gambling investigation he conducted while assigned to the MSOS (Metro Special Operations Section) and working with the FBI. The MSOS Commander, Captain Robert Hammer, cited Sgt. Lora’s remarkable experience and dedication.

The gambling investigation began with Sgt. Lora developing and working the information for a nearly a year, which culminated in the spring of 2007 and lead to search warrants being served at several area residences. Capt. Hammer said, “Cpl. Lora’s perseverance led to seizures of this major gambling operation’s currency and assets—that ultimately put the operator and his organization out of the business.”

June 2007 SBPD Detective Sgt. Michael Critchlow

Detective Sergeant Michael Critchlow received an “Exemplary Service Award” in acknowledgement of his day-to-day work ethic as well as outstanding investigative work-- and subsequent arrests-- of suspects in a well publicized recent grave site vase larceny case in June 2007.

Through his diligence on solving the case of 150 stolen brass vases from Highland Cemetery, Sgt. Critchlow’s efforts also assisted in solving a similar case at Chapel Hill Cemetery for the St. Joseph County Police Department. Chief Richard Bishop also commended him for his “remarkable enthusiasm and incredible compassion to solve this case for the victims.”

He was able to recover some of the stolen vessels and return them to the grieving family members of the deceased whose grave sites had been criminally violated.

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