The Law Enforcement Commendation and Medal is presented to those who have served with distinction and devotion in the field of law enforcement. The medal is intended to recognize exceptional service or accomplishment in the field of law enforcement. Eligibility is not limited to peace officers but extends to the entire range of persons who make and enforce the law. This includes peace officers, attorneys, judges, prosecutors and legislators who have performed an exceptional act or service beyond that normally expected. The recipients are usually recommended by their superiors or peers for their accomplishments. The award may be presented posthumously. The medal may be presented to an individual only once. No Oak Leaf Clusters or ribbon attachments are permitted.
Captain Chris Goodman, Sergeant Derek Nietert, Trooper James Ray, President ARSSAR Charles McLemore, ARSSAR Public Service Awards Chairman Wayne Shewmake. 9/13/21
ASP Trooper James Ray:
On December 4, 2020, at 10:37 AM, Officer Matt Young of the Arkansas Highway Police had stopped to check the welfare of a driver parked along I-40 near Ozark. The side windows on the vehicle were spray painted black preventing Officer Young from seeing through anything other than the driver's window. Officer Young called Trooper Ray to assist with the unusual encounter. When Trooper Ray arrived, he and Officer Young began to approach the vehicle at which time the driver pulled the vehicle onto the interstate and sped away.
During the ensuing pursuit, the suspect fled at speeds exceeding 100 miles per hour and passed several vehicles on the shoulder as he drove erratically. When given the opportunity to safely end the pursuit, Trooper Ray performed a Precision Immobilization Technique (PIT) on the fleeing suspect vehicle which was forced into a clockwise rotation into the westbound lanes. Unfortunately, the suspect was able to regain control of his vehicle and began driving eastbound in the westbound lanes, posing an extreme danger to other motorists who were now meeting the fleeing suspect head-on. The suspect traveled a short distance before he crossed the median and began traveling westbound in the eastbound lanes.
Trooper Ray was able to get ahead of the fleeing driver and crossed the median into the eastbound lanes, facing the direction he knew the suspect vehicle was traveling.
Using quick judgment, Trooper Ray stopped eastbound traffic, and began slowly driving eastbound as the suspect vehicle approached him traveling westbound. Trooper Ray knew that the next unit to be in a position on the eastbound side of the interstate was miles behind him.
Trooper Ray aimed his vehicle at the oncoming suspect and waited. He timed it perfectly, as suspect was passing in front of him, Trooper Ray accelerated quickly and crashed his vehicle into the front left corner of the suspect vehicle. This action forced the suspect vehicle into the median and disabled both vehicles. Trooper Ray was able to safely place the suspect into custody, and miraculously, neither he nor the suspect had any major injuries.
Trooper Ray was nominated and selected National State Trooper of the year 2021.
Hot Springs Village Police Chief Ricky Middleton was presented the SAR Law Enforcement Medal at the DeSoto Trace Chapter Meeting on Jan. 11, 2020. Chief Middleton has served on the police force since 1987. Making the award were Gene Rasure, Bruce Caverly (shaking hands with the chief) and Charles McLemore.
Crowleys Ridge Chapter Law Enforcement Award, Officer James Watson & Compatriot Hinds.