For the first time in a number of years, four public safety officers were recognized Monday night for their work on a home invasion case in which burglar was arrested a short time after the crime.
The officers were each given the department's commendation award for their work in solving a burglary in which a laptop and cell phone were stolen from a home on Rivard Boulevard.
Sgt. John Alcorn, Detective Chritopher J. Lee and public safety officers Chris Cotzias and Thomas Martindale were honored during a brief ceremony before city council. Director of Public Safety Stephen Poloni briefly described their roles in solving the crime.
The burglar was found walking along Mack Avenue a short time after stealing the laptop and cell phone from a home on Rivard. The burglar was acting suspicious and when officers approached, they had the owner of the cell phone call it from their home--it rang while in his pocket.
Additionally, he was carrying the stolen laptop in a backpack but he could not tell the officers what kind of computer it was, Poloni said.
Lee and Cotzias attended the ceremony and had their picture taken with Poloni and Mayor Dale Scrace.
At the end of the council meeting, several of the council members complimented Poloni for bringing back the awards ceremony for the department. They said they appreciate seeing the officers and recognizing their work.
Poloni said the department stopped having annual awards ceremonies several years ago. He is not exactly sure why as he only recently after retiring from Grosse Pointe Shores as its director.
In addition to the awards given Monday, Poloni said there will be a second round of awards given for 2011 at the next council meeting in March. The recipients for 2011 have been selected by Poloni, but in the future a three-member awards board will choose the winners, Poloni said.
The three members will be officers, he said, and they are in the midst of being selected now.