Congressman Vern Buchanan

Representing the 16th District of Florida

Buchanan Honors Exceptional Law Enforcement Officials

Jun 20, 2017
Press Release
Twelve Awards Presented to Local Law Enforcement

Law Enforcement Officials “Deserve Our Gratitude and Respect”

BRADENTON – U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan announced today the recipients of the sixth annual 16th Congressional District Law Enforcement Awards.


Buchanan and the award recipients at last night’s ceremony

The following 12 awards were presented last night during a special ceremony in Manatee County: 

  • Officer Jason Nuttall of the Bradenton Police Department received the Dedication and Professionalism Award.
     
  • Captain John Walsh, Captain Debra Kaspar, Lieutenant Jon Varley, Community Affairs Director Kaitlyn Perez, Deputy Phillip Mockler, Detective Tim Speth and Investigator Lynn Thomson of the Sarasota County Sheriff’s office received the Dedication and Professionalism Award.
     
  • Detective Richard Wilson of the Palmetto Police Department received the Dedication and Professionalism Award.
     
  • Officer Alan Bores of the Holmes Beach Police Department received the Dedication and Professionalism Award.
     
  • Detective Justin Warren of the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office received the Dedication and Professionalism Award.
     
  • Sergeant Robert Armstrong of the Sarasota Police Department received the Dedication and Professionalism Award.
     
  • Deputy Kevin Smetana of the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office received the Dedication and Professionalism Award.
     
  • Master Sergeant George Taunton of The Florida Highway Patrol received the Career Service Award.
     
  • Troopers Caleb Kerr and Trooper Brett Fitzpatrick of the Florida Highway Patrol received the Preservation of Life Award.
     
  • Sergeant Patrick Roberts of the Florida Highway Patrol received the Above and Beyond the Call of Duty Award.
     
  • Pastor Patrick Miller, Pastor Vincent Smith, Doctor Harriet Moore, Geoffry Gilot and Al-Muta Hawks, all affiliated with the Boys and Girls Club of Sarasota, received the Associate Service Award.
     
  • The Manatee County Sheriff’s Office Special Investigations Division received the Unit Citation Award.
     
  • Deputy Angel Buxeda and Deputy Grant Steube of the Manatee County Sheriff's Office received the Preservation of Life Award.

The Congressman established the awards to give special recognition to law enforcement officers, departments and units for exceptional achievement.

“On behalf of the people of Florida's 16th District, I applaud each of these outstanding law enforcement officials and offer my sincere appreciation for their selfless service and courage,” Buchanan said. “Every day, brave men and women put themselves in harm’s way to enforce the laws of our society and protect public safety. They deserve our gratitude and respect. These awards are a fitting tribute to our officers and a reminder of the important role they play in our communities.” 

Award winners were chosen by an independent panel comprised of current and retired law enforcement personnel representing a cross-section of the district’s law enforcement community.

Buchanan is a strong supporter of the law enforcement community. His Thin Blue Line Act, which toughens penalties on cop killers, recently passed the U.S. House. The bill is supported by a number of national and local law enforcement organizations and officials. Buchanan also hosts the annual 16th Congressional District Fire and Rescue and Emergency Medical Services Awards. Buchanan established the awards to give special recognition to fire and rescue and EMS personnel who have provided distinguished service to his constituents.