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Camillus police dept. awards excellence

The Camillus Police Department awarded officers and community members last week for excellence in 2009.

Chief Tom Winn and Capt. Steve Rotunno presented the annual business, citizen and officer recognition awards before the Camillus Town Board meeting Tuesday March 9.

The following individuals were honored:

Detective James Nightingale was recognized as the 2009 Officer of the Year.

Nightingale spent nearly seven months investigating the Jan. 3, 2009 hit-and-run incident that claimed the life of 24-year-old Erik Kohler. Nightingale's efforts resulted in a sentence of three to nine years of prison for Tim Henry, as well as several drug arrests stemming from residential complaints of noise, Winn said.

Officers Kristen Afarian, Matthew Slate, Daniel Dougher and Mark Flint were recognized as recipients of the Chief of Police Commendation Medals.

Afarian and Slate were recognized for their quick actions in providing medical care (CPR) on two separate occasions in early 2009.

Flint was honored for his quick action while investigating a motor vehicle accident on Dec. 28, 2009 when he alerted Afarian seconds before her patrol car was struck in the rear end, where Afarian had been standing removing items from the vehicle's trunk.

Dougher was awarded for his quick action in a serious motor vehicle accident on Route 5 when he assisted in gaining entry to a vehicle where the driver was trapped.

Al Kalfass, director of Western Area Volunteer Emergency Services, received a 2009 Citizen Appreciation Award in recognition of the outstanding Emergency Medical Services that WAVES provides to residents.

"Throughout 2009, WAVES personnel supported the Camillus Police Department on numerous medical calls, motor vehicle collisions and other related emergencies," Winn said. "WAVE's team of devoted professionals also assisted several members of the police department that were in need of medical care in 2009. "

Robert and Patricia Duffy, owners of the Fairmount Cleaners, were presented with the 2009 Citizen Appreciation Award. For more than 20 years, Fairmount Cleaners has provided the department with uniform maintenance service and contributed to the professional appearance of the officers.

Daniel Meyers, owner of Meyers Towing, also received a 2009 Citizen Appreciation Award for providing professional, efficient road side service, to the Camillus police.

Jessica Polge and Chelsey Palmer received the 2009 Saved by the Belt Award, in recognition of their decision to buckle up the night of Jan. 28, 2009, when they were involved in a serious motor vehicle collision on Route 5 in the town of Camillus.

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