Manheim Township Police Department Annual Awards Ceremony - 6/11/2018

MANHEIM TOWNSHIP POLICE DEPARTMENT ANNUAL AWARDS CEREMONY - JUNE 11, 2018

During the bi-monthly Manheim Township Board of Commissioner's meeting on Monday, June 11, 2018, Chief Rudzinski presented the 2017 Manheim Township Police Department annual awards.  The following awards were presented:

Meritorious Award - This award is given for commendable and praiseworthy service activity during the past year which resulted in the proper handling of an unusual, strange, or abnormal incident or situation.  In August 2017, Officers Christopher Keenan and Aaron McCoy responded to a Manheim Township residence in an attempt to locate a 16-year-old who had runaway two days before. The 16-year-old was located, along with a second juvenile who was also determined to be a runaway.  While there, the officers noticed prescription bottles that did not belong to anybody there.  A search of the room turned up numerous items that had been stolen during recent vehicle break-ins in the area.  A subsequent investigation and interviews resulted in solving seventeen (17) vehicle break-ins. 

Distinguished Service Award - This award is given for an outstanding individual act of achievement directly associated with the primary functions of the department, which involves a recognizable individual contribution above and beyond that which is normally expected or required.  In May 2017, Officer Christopher Keenan responded to a burglary in progress in Lancaster Township.  While enroute, there was an additional call of shots fired in the area.  Officer Keenan approached on foot and confronted a suspect, whom he took into custody.  It was determined that the suspect was armed and had been involved in burglaries in the area.  Several months later, Officer Gary Rynier responded to a domestic in Manheim Township involving the same suspect.  Assisted by Officer Keenan, the two saw a photo of items that they recognized as property that had been taken during the rash of spring burglaries.  The two took the time to research the previous incidents and were eventually able to make the connections which led to charges.

Humanitarian Award - This award is given to an individual for a significant act or charity, and which aids either those less fortunate or those in need.  Officer Scott Neff is the police department School Resource Officer in Lancaster Township.  He is very active with the students and does many activities with them on his own time.  In 2017, using his own funds, he created a basketball board that looks similar to the Connect 4 game for the kids at his school.  Officer Neff has been doing these acts of kindness on a regular basis since he became a SRO.  In 2017, Officer Michael Tropp coordinated the police department's participation in a local Special Olympics fundraiser.  Police officers from around the county serve as the waiters and waitresses, and all of the tips are donated to the cause.  Officer Tropp and nine other MTPD officers participated and a total of $2,816 was raised and donated to the Special Olympics.

Life Saving Award - This award is given for an act which resulted in saving a life.  In March 2017, Officer Shane Long responded to a cardiac arrest call in Lancaster Township.  Officer Long arrived and began CPR on an unresponsive female.  Care was turned over to medical personnel, who were able to regain a pulse prior to transporting the patient to the hospital.  It was later learned that the female was expected to make a full recovery.

Commissioners' Firearm Proficiency Award - This award is given to the officer, or officers, whom had the highest total score in the pistol qualifications for the year.  In 2017, Officer Joel Ayers and Detective Sergeant Gregory Buchkoski scored 359 out of 360 total possible points.

Civilian of the Year Award - This award, whose recipient is selected by the civilian employees, is given to the civilian who is the best representative of the police department and its civilian personnel.  The individual selected should truly be the best representative of our personnel who is both a good citizen and is a good, competent, and capable employee.  In 2017, Annette Paris was selected as she was responsible for all of the police department repair needs for cars, computers, and the building.  She had the most knowledge of the department's physical infrastructure than anyone.  She was the absolute "go to" person when there was a problem with any piece of equipment.

Officer of the Year Award - This award, whose recipient is selected by fellow officers, is given to the officer that is best representative of the police department and its sworn personnel.  The individual selected should truly be the best representative of our personnel who is a good person / citizen and a good, competent, and professional police officer.  In 2017, Officer Michael Tropp was selected as he best represented the police department, performed well as an officer, and always went out of his way to help others.

Chief's Award - This award is given to an employee who brings public acclaim to the department through programs to further police efficiency or otherwise advance the police profession.  In 2017 and continuing into 2018, Sergeant Michael Piacentino has been instrumental in helping the police department move forward in several different areas.  He volunteered to spearhead our Coffee with a Cop program, which has been very successful.  He coordinated the implementation of the police department's CRIMEWATCH website, which went live this past January and has helped the department solve numerous crimes.  He coordinated the department's implementation of PowerDMS, which is a software program that helps the department manage its policies, training, and accreditation information.  He is the department's Public Information Officer, and through that is able to keep the community up-to-date on what is transpiring and what they can do to help their community.  He is also the department's Accreditation Manager.

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MEDIA CONTACT: Sergeant Michael T. Piacentino, W: 717-569-6401 Ext: 1583, C: 717-340-2130, piacentm@police.co.lancaster.pa.us