Honoring Law Enforcement Officers in Virginia’s 10Th Districtby Representative Barbara Comstock
Posted on 2015-12-15
in the house of representatives
Tuesday, December 15, 2015
Mrs. COMSTOCK. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to recognize the following
law enforcement personnel who have recently been honored at the 11th
Annual Law Enforcement Appreciation Dinner in my district for their
invaluable service and commitment to our communities. I submit the
following excerpts from a speech delivered by Mr. Jim Wink, who spoke
at this event in the fall. This year's honorees are Officer Dustin
Bowers of the Mount Weather Police Department, Officer William McCann
of the Northwestern Regional Adult Detention Center, Deputy Shane
Jewell of the Clarke County Sheriff's Office, Deputy Mackenzie Carter
of the Winchester City Sheriff's Office, Deputy Aaron Jeter of the
Frederick County Sheriff's Office, Laura Patten of the Berryville
Police Department, Corporal Richie Lewis O'Connor of Winchester Police
Department, Trooper Terry Hilliker of the Virginia Department of State
Police, and DEA Special Agent Thomas Hickey of the Northwest Virginia
Regional Drug Task Force.
Officer Dustin Bowers has continually displayed the highest degree of competence, esprit de corps, and dedication to the mission at Mount Weather. He routinely goes above and beyond to perform his duties as a police officer, and in doing so, improves the Mount Weather department. Officer Bowers, without hesitation, took on the responsibility of serving as the field training officer for new officers. This year, Officer Bowers was selected to attend the federal law enforcement training center's active shooter instructor course. Since completing the course, Officer Bowers has worked to improve the department's capability to respond to an active shooter incident. He is currently developing an active shooter training program for Mount Weather emergency operation center employees focused on teaching them how to react to shooting incidents in the work place and other public locations. Officer Bowers also, through his own initiative, researched and proposed new equipment that the department purchased, which improved police officer readiness at all levels. Mount Weather Police Department can think of no finer officer more deserving of recognition.
Officer William McCann is the head of the field training officer program, a CPR instructor, training officer, and constant mentor at the detention center in Winchester. He has been nominated and will be the recipient of two life-saving awards. In addition to these two critical incidents, Officer McCann's impact is present on a daily basis. He is one of the most respected and influential staff members in the detention center which accounts for nearly 200 employees. Officer McCann's wealth of knowledge comes from over 20 years of experience in the Maryland department of corrections where he served as a lieutenant.
Deputy Shane Jewell joined the Clarke County Sheriff's Office in 2009. He is a respected instructor at the Rappahannock Regional Criminal Justice Academy, where he teaches defensive tactics. Deputy Jewell supports the mission of this office and is the epitome of a team player. Deputy Jewell's hard work and dedication to the Clarke County community is valuable.
Deputy Mackenzie Carter joined the Winchester City Sheriff's Office only a year ago; however, in a short time, she has displayed her dedication to the office and her team. She exerts a strong ability to assist others and volunteers for extra duties at the sheriff's office. Deputy Carter has the willingness to take on difficult projects and see them to a successful completion, which has repeatedly impressed the sheriff over the past year. Deputy Carter has also shown that she is dedicated to going above and beyond in serving her community. She has participated in and started several community-based fundraising events and community service incentives, such as the CCAP food drive, Evans Home for Children food drive, the Winchester Literacy Foundation summer reading program.
While on patrol one evening, Deputy Aaron Jeter, observed a speeding violator. He made the decision to stop the vehicle for the violation. With the assistance from other deputies; Deputy Jeter was able to recover a large amount of heroin from under the vehicle. The total amount seized from the traffic stop was 261 individual packets of heroin and over $400.00 in cash. Following this seizure, Deputy Jeter continued his increased effort to combat the local heroin epidemic, which plagues our community. Deputy Jeter's work against the local heroin problem is truly noteworthy. The efforts of deputies, like Aaron Jeter, will help curb the amount of heroin related overdoses and deaths, which our community has recently faced. Deputy Jeter's outstanding work with these cases makes him a worthy and deserving candidate for this year's HSCBA award.
Laura Patten serves the Berryville Police Department as the sole civilian employee in the capacity of administrative assistant. She began working for the department in August of 1989 and is looking forward to her upcoming retirement in 2016. Early in her career she served as a crossing guard making sure the children of the community made their way safely to school and back home. In the office, Laura keeps the flow of communication working between the community and officers in the field. Indeed, she is the face and voice of the department working the front desk and answering the phones. It is often an under-appreciated function that Laura provides to the department. Berryville PD Chief Neal White states he is very thankful that she is getting the credit she truly deserves.
Corporal Richie Lewis of Winchester responded to a violent kidnapping last year that involved a male holding a knife to the throat of a female. Lewis helped to neutralize the situation with the help of his team. Upon seeing the officers the suspect became agitated, so the officers withdrew from the building out of fear the suspect would harm the female. When the suspect shut the hall door Cpl. Lewis reentered the building and snuck up to the landing on the third floor. While Cpl. Lewis was approaching the landing, with gun drawn, the suspect reopened the door. Out of fear of shooting the female Cpl. Lewis transitioned from his pistol to his Taser. When the suspect gave [[Page E1789]] Cpl. Lewis an opening between the female's body and his own, Cpl. Lewis was able to shoot the suspect with his Taser and incapacitate him, bringing the situation to a quick and effective resolution.
Trooper Hilliker handles all traffic and criminal matters with professionalism and personal pride. He continues to take on the extra responsibility of being an explosive K-9 handler on top of his other duties. Trooper Hilliker's dedication to the department and the citizens it serves is unmatched. 2001-2002 Winchester Police Department, 1997-1999 Muskego Police Department Muskego, WI. Terry Hilliker served as a member of the Winchester and Muskego Police Departments as a patrolman where he was tasked with a multitude of responsibilities and challenges when working in local law enforcement. The experience Terry learned during this time is evident in his current role as a trooper. Terry Hilliker started his service related professions with the United States Marine Corps (1976-1996). He served in various command, staff and administrative billets from the platoon, company, and battalion levels to the regimental, brigade, and division level. Terry retired from the Marine Corps with the rank of lieutenant colonel.
DEA Special Agent Thomas Hickey is a contributing member of the Northwest Virginia Regional Drug Task Force and assists members of the force with numerous narcotics cases annually. Special Agent Hickey has been and continues to be a major supporting federal entity essential to fighting the current heroin epidemic. Special Agent Hickey has been instrumental in numerous local heroin cases by providing intelligence information, identifying major Baltimore, Maryland heroin suppliers and arresting and prosecuting large scale Baltimore heroin distributors who have plagued our communities. Special Agent Hickey is a dedicated law enforcement professional who believes in the working relationships between state, local and federal law enforcement agencies. He continues to provide an expert element to the drug task force that is necessary in combating the drug epidemics that plague our communities. Special Agent Hickey responds to active drug overdoses and assists agents by providing support and advice. He prefers to be involved in local drug cases from the beginning, and often responds to and assists local agents at all hours of the day and night. In 2014 special Agent Hickey initiated, investigated, and prosecuted fourteen large scale federal heroin investigations all of which were directly related to the Winchester, Frederick and Clarke county communities.