Savannah Chatham Metro Police Department Bestows Awards

Six officers, a communications dispatcher, the SCMPD Training Unit and a citizen were recognized on June 3 for actions above and beyond the call of duty at the department’s awards ceremony.

Officers, government officials, family and friends gathered at the Armstrong Center for Professional and Continuing Education Auditorium Wednesday morning for the event.

The winners included Mr. Harry Gloss, who in August of 2007 tackled an armed gunman at the Bank South on Stephenson Road and held him until police arrived.

He received a Citizen’s Commendation for his actions.

The SCMPD Training Unit received a Unit Citation for its continuing work to maintain mandated training, while creating new and innovative training practices.

They have raised the bar for the department in almost every aspect of policing.

The unit was also presented the certificate given by the International Association of Chiefs of Police Civil Rights Committee for its Officer Created Jeopardy program.

Life Saving Awards went to the following: Ofc. Claude Debman, who saved a man from choking; APO Terry Gideon, who provided first aid to a citizen who was not breathing; Ms. Judith McCook, a dispatcher who talked a mother through CPR when her baby stopped breathing; Lt. John Best, who saved a man who had been shot in the chest on River Street in August of 2008; and Ofc. Wayne Peterson who rendered CPR to a 3-week old baby after being flagged down by the victim’s mother in Yamacraw Village in January of this year.

The Award of Merit was presented to Sgt. Racine Chaney, who pulled a man from a burning vehicle. His actions saved the victim’s life.

An Award of Valor was presented to Ofc. Josh Hunt in recognition of his actions in September, 2005 when he ran in to a burning house and pulled the victim – who was extremely combative – from the fire. Police later learned the victim had set the fire and intended to kill himself and anyone who tried to save him.

Chief Michael Berkow commented that all the winners had exhibited the Vision, Mission and Core Values of the department in support of a safe and secure community.

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