Policemen, Firefighters and Ambulance Corp personnel were honored for outstanding service at the Public Safety Awards ceremony at the Crossway Firehouse on Friday morning October 12th. The stories that prompted these heroic acts were made public at the ceremony - some for the first time:
Participating in the ceremonies were Mayor Miriam Levitt Flisser, Police Chief John Brogan, Deacon Ted Gaskin, Village Manager Al Gatta, SVAC President David Raizen, Fire Chief Thomas Cain, Police Commissioner Jon Mark and Fire Commissioner Kay Eisenman. The national anthem was sung by SHS student Sophie Laruelle.
As there are so many wonderful stories, we will cover the police awards this week and follow with the Fire Department and Volunteer Ambulance Corps Awards in subsequent weeks. Here, in abbreviated format are the Police awards with descriptions of the incidents and the names of those who were recognized for saving the day:
SVAC’s David Raizen got a desperate call from a despondent woman who was threatening to harm herself on January 21, 2011. While reassuring her on the phone he was able to capture her phone number and relay it to Sergeant Peter Kelly who tracked it to an address in Mamaroneck. Raizen engaged her on the phone until emergency personnel could reach her. Raizen and Sergeant Peter Kelly were cited for their calm demeanor, quick thinking and compassion. Raizen was given the Civilian Public Service Award and Kelly, Command Recognition.
On the morning of March 17, 2011 a pregnant Taunton Road woman went into labor and feared that the baby would be born before she could reach the hospital.
Police Officers Johnson and LoGiudice along with SVAC crew members, Bianna Kun, Shari Feig, Lisa Kulak and Jay Reide were able to move the woman into the ambulance and deliver the baby en route to the hospital. Both mother and child arrived in good shape due to the expertise of the emergency team. For their efforts, Officers Johnson and LoGiudice were given Administrative Recognition and
Jay Reidel, Lisa Kulak, Shari Feig and Bianna Kun were given Civilian Public Service Awards and recognized by the Village Board.
A Walworth Avenue woman called police on the morning of May 7, 2011 to say that a man had entered her home. The resident confronted the intruder and he fled. Sergeant Siciliano and Officer Paul Zavadil searched the area, found the suspect and arrested him for criminal trespass. They were given Honorable Service Medals for rapid response, diligent follow up and dedication to duty.
In response to a report of an assault on a Bee Line Bus on the morning of June 13, 2011, Police Officer Armando Nava went to the corner of Post and Huntington Roads where the bus was stopped. He got a description of the suspect who had the fled the scene and broadcast it to all untis. Robert Lua of the Scarsdale Highway Department had seen the man flee and discard his T-shirt so that he would not be recognized. A new description was broadcast and Sergeant John Spagna and Police Officer David Rosa stopped the man on Fisher Avenue in White Plains. The suspect admitted that he was responsible and was arrested. For their work Spagna, Nava and Rosa were given Administrative Recognition and Lua received a Civilian Public Service Award and recognition from the Village Board.
After a serious hit and run accident on the Hutchinson River Parkway near Weaver Street on the morning of July 13, 2011 Westchester County Police put out a request for assistance to locate a man and woman who had fled the parkway on foot. Sergeant John Spagn and Police Office Boris Grgas found the woman and arrested her on Meadow Road in Scarsdale. The second suspect continued to flee and police pursued him with help from Harrison, Mamaroneck and New Rochelle Police. Ultimately Police Officer Armando Nava and Office Steven Delbene caught the man on Winged Foot Golf Course. All four officers were given honorable service medals for their rapid response, diligent follow up and dedication.
Detective Servando Rodriguez was given an Honorable Service Medal for his work in tracking down suspects and investigating what happened during a fight at 2:55 am on August 19, 2011. During the fight four young men were injured by a gang of seven men who met them at the Scarsdale Train Station. Wielding baseball bats, broomsticks and a tire iron they assaulted the victims and then fled. Armando interviewed victims and witnesses and obtained a surveillance video that helped him to identify all seven assailants. On September 21, 2011 all the suspects were arrested and charged.
Police Officer Arefieg was also given an Honorable Service Medal for work that lead to the arrest of a jewelry thief who stole two diamond rings from Sam Lehr Jewelry on Harwood Court. At 1:20 pm on October 22, 2011 Arefieg saw a man run down Scarsdale Avenue and jump into a parked car. The man took off his hat and threw it onto the passenger seat and sped away. Due to the man’s unusual behavior, Arfieg noted the license plate number of the car. Shortly after, the jeweler reported the ring theft and the description of the suspect matched the man Arfieg had seen. Police were able to track the license plate number and subsequently identified, arrested and charged the man with several jewelry thefts. Arefieg was cited for his dedication to duty, diligent follow up and professionalism.
The freak snowstorm on October 29, 2011 caused downed trees and wires, power outages and “widespread” destruction in Scarsdale. The Police were flooded with hundreds of calls in a very short period of time. To make matters worse, the Police and Fire Departments were still in the process of moving back into the newly renovated Public Safety Building after two and a half years in remote facilities. In the midst of the storm and the chaos, a woman travelling in a car on Post Road went into labor. Police and ambulance personnel, with the assistance of the Scarsdale Highway Department cleared the road in front of the woman’s car to allow her to be rushed to the hospital where the baby was safely delivered.
During the storm, Officers maintained a calm demeanor, properly prioritized their responses and conducted themselves in a professional manner. The following were awarded Command Recognition for their work during the storm:
- Captain Andrew Matturro
- Sergeant Joseph Dusavage
- Sergeant Peter Kelly
- Sergeant Boris Grgas
- Police Officer John Boggi
- Police Officer Ronnie Arefieg
- Police Officer David Rosa
- Police officer Steven Delbene
- Police Officer Robaire Johnson
- Police Officer Jessica Knatz
- Police Officer Craig Carroll
- Police Officer Eric LoGiudice
- Police Officer Anthony Gaudio
Congratulations to all! Look for more awards on Scarsdale10583 next week.
Photos by Sarah Schuman