Virginia State Police Program Rewards Auto Theft Prevention

RICHMOND, Va. — The Virginia State Police Help Eliminate Auto Theft (HEAT) program honored the 2015-2016 HEAT Awards recipients at the annual conferences of the Virginia Sheriffs’ Association in Tysons Corner on Sept. 13 and the Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police in Roanoke on Sept. 19.

The HEAT Awards program is an annual competition open to all Virginia law enforcement entities and employees who work in auto theft enforcement and prevention. Nominees must demonstrate excellence in at least two of the following four categories: enforcement, intelligence gathering, prevention and recovery.

“Stolen cars are sometimes used to commit more serious offenses,” said Virginia State Police First Sgt. Steve Hall, HEAT program coordinator. “It’s important that we acknowledge some of the work that’s being done to prevent auto theft.”

Auto thefts in Virginia have declined 62 percent since 1992, but there was a 7.2 percent increase from 2014-2015.

“It’s a reminder as to why auto theft prevention is important,” Hall said. “Even though the overall numbers are down and it may not seem like an issue, if you wake up tomorrow and your car is gone, that’s going to be a pretty big issue to you.”

The complete list of HEAT Awards recipients is below. To learn more about HEAT Awards, visit HEATreward.com/resources/default.aspx.

VIRGINIA SHERIFFS’ ASSOCIATION CONFERENCE

Individual Officer Award Winner
Detective James Harris, Spotsylvania County Sheriff’s Office
Sergeant Christopher Adams, Shenandoah County Sheriff’s Office
Deputy Chris James, Shenandoah County Sheriff’s Office

Individual Officer Award Finalist
Deputy Michael Robinson, Warren County Sheriff’s Office

Agency Award Winner
Sheriff Steve Draper, Martinsville Sheriff’s Office
Laura Hopkins, Martinsville Sheriff’s Office
Sheriff Mark Amos, Orange County Sheriff’s Office
Sarah Altman, TRIAD Coordinator, Orange County Sheriff’s Office
First Sergeant Timothy Bryner, Spotsylvania County Sheriff’s Office
Captain James Bibens, Spotsylvania County Sheriff’s Office

Agency Award Finalist
Sheriff B.J. Roberts, Hampton Sheriff’s Office
Lieutenant Alonzo Cherry, Hampton Sheriff’s Office
Sheriff Raleigh H. Isaacs, Sr., Suffolk Sheriff’s Office
Katie Jones, Suffolk Sheriff’s Office

Certificates
Individual Officer
Deputy John Kcraget, Spotsylvania County Sheriff’s Office
Sheriff Tim Allen, Roanoke City Sheriff’s Office
Lauren Dunne, Community Relations Specialist, Roanoke City Sheriff’s Office
Sheriff J.J. “Joe” McLaughlin, New Kent County Sheriff’s Office
Patrol Deputy Eric Quarles, New Kent County Sheriff’s Office
Sheriff Keith Dunagan, Wythe County Sheriff’s Office
Deputy Wayne Kirby, Wythe County Sheriff’s Office

VIRGINIA ASSOCIATION OF CHIEFS OF POLICE CONFERENCE

Individual Officer Award Winner
Detective Matthew Fitzer, Henrico County Division of Police
Detective Christopher Gordon, Henrico County Division of Police
Detective Philip Weddle, Salem Police Department

Individual Officer Award Finalist
Officer Nathaniel Whitenack, Virginia Commonwealth University Police Department
Detective Todd Cheyney, Salem Police Department
Officer William Jenkins, Henrico County Division of Police

Agency Award Winner
Chief Tommy Galbreath, Drakes Branch Police Department
Detective Yarbrough, Henrico County Division of Police
Chief Mike Crawley, Salem Police Department
Detective Philip Weddle, Salem Police Department

Certificates
Individual Officer
Officer Brad Helmick, Henrico County Division of Police
Officer Samuel Inge, Henrico County Division of Police
Officer Jason Shilling, Salem Police Department
Officer Adam Bowser, Salem Police Department
Officer Brandon Fretwell, Salem Police Department
Officer Ben Taylor, Salem Police Department
Senior Officer Mike Warren, Salem Police Department
Officer Raybert Howell, Roanoke City Police Department
Sergeant James Price, Roanoke City Police Department
Officer Dario Tomasevic, Roanoke City Police Department
Sergeant Damon Washington, Arlington County Police Department
Chief Jay Farr, Arlington County Police Department

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The HEAT program was established in 1992 to educate citizens and law enforcement about theft of vehicles and vehicle parts. HEAT supports local and state law enforcement through various auto theft prevention efforts. For more information, visit HEATreward.com. Visit Virginia State Police online at www.vsp.virginia.gov.

 

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