Vail police employees receive awards
Vail, CO Colorado
VAIL, Colorado – Ten employees of the Vail Police Department have been recognized with commendation awards for their efforts in responding to the shooting at the Sandbar Sports Grill on Nov. 7. The awards were presented by Chief Dwight Henninger during a recognition ceremony on March 17.
Officers Kevin Luse, Ryan Millbern, Carrie Briggs, Mike Bindle and Craig Westering received the Silver Wreath of Valor, which is the second highest award given by the department. The officers were among the first to arrive on scene the night of the incident and played an invaluable role in evacuating and securing the area, according to Henninger. The officers, along with other local law enforcement personnel, arrived just after the shooting occurred and were able to simultaneously contain and evacuate the area surrounding the establishment. In addition, they gathered valuable information about both the incident and the suspect, which became crucial once more officers arrived.
Emergency dispatchers Beth Dobransky, Bonnie Collard, Julie Anderson, Mellisa McWithey and Randy Braucht received the Bronze Wreath of Merit, which is the third highest award given by the department. Each of these dispatchers played a major role in the success of the multi-agency response, according to Henninger. In addition to answering numerous 911 calls during the incident, they were able to coordinate responses from more than 10 agencies, notify dozens of responding officers and identify the gunman through descriptions gathered from 911 calls.-
“All of these employees exemplified the department’s values of integrity, teamwork, ownership and excellence in the highest degree and have contributed greatly to achieving the department’s mission of providing a sense of safety and security through high quality police work,” Henninger said.
One person was killed and three others were wounded during the shooting, which was the first such incident in more than 20 years. The suspect, Richard “Rossi” Moreau, is currently being held without bond at the Eagle County Jail and is awaiting trial on multiple charges, including first degree murder.
The department’s highest award is the Gold Wreath of Honor, which involves extreme risk to the life of an employee.