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Bonney Lake police announce 2003 awards
The Bonney Lake Police Department announced the 2003 Police Department awards on Dec. 16. The awards are voted on by the officers' peers, except for the Outstanding Service Award, which is presented by Chief Bryan Jeter.
Police Officer of the Year
Brian Byerley was chosen as Police Officer of the Year by a vote of his peers. Byerley has been a police officer for the last nine years and came to Bonney Lake two years ago.
Byerley grew up in the Bonney Lake and Sumner area, graduating from Sumner High School with a dream of being a police officer. "Since I was a kid I wanted to be a police officer. Now, I have this opportunity to work with Bryan Jeter and get paid for this job. The people that work here really come together and work as a team."
Byerley works as a patrol officer, and a part-time investigator on the department Investigations Team. He is also a member of the Metro Pierce Special Response Team and the Crime Response Unit. The CRU is a multiagency team that deals with serious crime that involves a number of different jurisdictions and agencies.
The work on the department investigative team has been both demanding and rewarding for Byerley. "This year we worked a violent kidnapping, abduction, rape and had the suspect in custody 12 hours later. There was a home invasion last month that we had wrapped up in 24 hours, two men were arrested. There is more violent crime around here now. We've seen a real upsurge, beyond assaults and burglaries. Everything from vehicle prowls to violent crime."
The award came as a surprise to Byerley. "I'm a spoke in the wheel. It's really nice to be appreciated and recognized by peers, but everyone in this department is worthy of the award."
Outstanding Service Award
Jeter chooses the recipient each year for the Outstanding Service Award. This year, he named the Bonney Lake Investigations Team - Sgt. Thomas Jenkins, Detective Dana Hubbard, Detective Kelly Maras, Officer Glenn Hopkins, Officer Kurt Alfano and Officer Brian Byerley.
"This unit has investigated over 500 cases this year," Jeter said. "They've had one serious crime after another - armed robberies, assault, arson, kidnapping, rape. This unit solved every single one in a very short amount of time. They've gone above and beyond; it's been an incredible performance."
One the cases that stood out over the last year was the narcotics bust led by Maras who works with the Drug Enforcement Agency.
"Six pounds of ice (a type of cocaine), 97 percent pure; it was a huge bust. Really a crown jewel of his year," Jeter said.
Jeter stated the unit worked on at least seven high profile cases, solving each one. "It's been a team effort, and they just take everything up a notch."
The other awards presented are as follows:
Reserve Police Officer of the Year - Marcus Koehn
Support Officer of the Year - Louise Emry
Three-year hash mark - Kurt Alfano, Ron Sasaki
Five-year pin - David Thaves
15-year pin - Greg Cantrell, Michael Strozyk, Bryan Jeter
Certificates of Appreciation - volunteer Gary Roth, volunteer Garland Cox, reserve officer Todd Morrow, reserve officer Marcus Koehn, reserve officer Chris Alexander.