At the Arlington County Crime Solvers 2019 law enforcement awards luncheon: Back row from left, Dr. Patrick K. Murphy, superintendent of ACPS; ACPD Police Chief Jay Farr; Andres Tobar, Charles Meng, John Murphy, and Michael Garcia, ACCS board members. Front row from left: ACCS award recipients School Resource Officer (SRO) Detective Kevin Treakle, former SRO Supervisor Lieutenant Susan Noack, and SRO Detective Jackie Pagan.
Photo by Shirley Ruhe.
The Arlington County Crime Solvers (ACCS) 5th annual law enforcement officer of the year awards luncheon honored three law enforcement school resource officers (SROs) on Thursday, May 9 at the Salsa Room on Columbia Pike. This year's theme was "School Safety, It's Up to All of Us."
The three recipients of the ACCS Law Enforcement Officers of the Year Award for "those who shine and go beyond" are Lieutenant Susan Noack, Detective Kevin Treakle and Detective Jackie Pagan.
Dr. Patrick K. Murphy, superintendent of the Arlington County Public Schools, said, "We work with principals, police, families, neighbors. The system is only as strong as the message. What I want you to take away today is whatever role you play I want you to reinforce good decision-making by our kids."
Murphy says people see the unfortunate things happening around the country and wonder how to prevent it from happening here. What systems are in place? He points out that all systems have a flaw in them, so how can that be changed?
"My message today is that we need to share information. If you see something, say something. Some people are afraid to act. They don't think bad things could be possible. But we follow up on everything.
"What lights the fuse is that our kids really care about each other and will respond if they see good decision making. We need to give kids the confidence to react and know that we will follow through.
"For instance, the police are proactive and on it immediately. Typically events occur at the end of the school day. The police close the gap quickly so that we can inform families by the following day."
Jay Farr, chief of the Arlington County Police, points out there is a reason that "we talk about school 'resource' officers, not 'police' officers." He says, "The three officers being honored today are truly a resource to us and the school they work in."
Farr says their relationship building has a day-to-day impact on the community. They specialize in ways to build relationships. They have coordinated lockdowns, mentored in summer programs, been involved in suicide prevention and second chance for drug offenders as well as safety camps. "It takes a special kind of individual. I never could have been one myself."
ACCS is a nonprofit organization that sponsors a 24-hour anonymous tip telephone line to help law enforcement apprehend those who have committed crimes. Andres Tobar, president of ACCS says the hot tip line is 1-866-411-8477 and urges community members to get involved.