AMARILLO - Earlier today, the Amarillo Police Department hosted an award ceremony honoring officers for accomplishments in the line of duty.
Amarillo Police Chief Ed Drain handed out a total of eight awards.
Officer Douglas Richardson was awarded the Medal of Valor for his bravery while being shot at on October 24, 2016. Ofc. Richardson attempted to make a traffic stop on a vehicle for a traffic violation at southwest 3rd Avenue and south Rusk. The driver of the vehicle refused to stop and began firing rounds at Ofc. Richardson. Ofc. Richardson continued his pursuit of the suspect which ended up on IH-40 going westbound past the New Mexico state line. Ofc. Richardson continued relaying his location to dispatch until he was out of range for the radio to be heard. He then used his cell phone to call dispatch and keep them updated on the location and that shots were continuing to be fired at him by the suspect. Ofc. Richardson continued the pursuit until the suspect pulled over and exited his vehicle in New Mexico. The suspect fired more shots at officers and he was shot by a DPS Trooper and taken into custody. Ofc. Richardson was awarded the Medal of Valor for his exceptional bravery to put his life in danger and pursue a suspect that was posing a threat to him and the community that he serves.
Corporal Sheldon West and Corporal Craig Cothrin were awarded Life Saving Awards. On December 13th, 2016, Cpl. West and Cpl. Cothrin responded to a 53-year-old male in cardiac arrest. The victim had been unresponsive with no pulse for several minutes. Cpl. West and Cpl. Cothrin began life-saving measures and were able to get a pulse back on the victim, who was then transported to the hospital. For their quick actions and dedication to protect and serve the citizens of Amarillo, Cpl.orporal Sheldon West and Cpl. Craig Cothrin were awarded the Amarillo Police Department’s Life-Saving Award.
Officer Justin Frye and Officer Rhett Amburn were awarded Life-Saving Awards. On August 7th, 2016 Ofc. Frye and Ofc. Amburn responded to a 22-year-old female unconscious and not breathing. The officers began life-saving measures and were able to get a pulse back on the victim. The victim was transported to a hospital and alive today because of the quick and proper actions taken by Ofc. Frye and Ofc. Amburn. For their quick actions and dedication to protect and serve the citizens of the City of Amarillo, Ofc. Justin Frye and Ofc. Rhett Amburn were awarded the Amarillo Police Department Life-Saving Award.
Corporal Mike Williams and Corporal Jon Heath were awarded Meritorious Service Citations. From November 2015 through November 2016 Cpl. Williams and Cpl. Heath assisted in numerous investigations involving local, state and federal law enforcement agencies. This program was conducted in addition to their everyday duties as members of the APD Motorcycle Unit. Cpl. Williams’ and Cpl. Heath’s dedication to this assignment led to numerous warrant arrests, stolen vehicle recoveries, and other peripheral investigations.
Sergeant Brent Barbee was awarded a Meritorious Service Citation for his exemplary service in the Amarillo Police Department Crime Prevention Unit. Sgt. Barbee began his career with APD in 1979 and was assigned to the Crime Prevention Unit in 2008. Sgt. Barbee has served as the Department Public Information Officer and routinely goes above and beyond his required duties. Due to his high level of recognition, Sgt.t Barbee often receives calls from the public for assistance. He often follows up on these calls and investigates before sending them to the proper unit. Sgt. Barbee played a key role in establishing the use of Nixle and Twitter by the police department. This has not only been a great communication tool to get information out quickly, but it has also been a good platform to inform the public of the great work our officers do on a regular basis.
The Amarillo Police Department wants to congratulate all of the employees that received awards and thank them for their service. We would also like to thank the citizens of Amarillo for allowing us to serve you.