AUTO THEFT ADVISORY COMMITTEE (A.T.A.C.)
ORANGE COUNTY VEHICLE THEFT
2008 RECOVERY OFFICER OF THE YEAR AWARDS PRESENTATION BRUNCH
Sponsored by the Orange County Auto Theft Advisory Committee (A.T.A.C.), a partnership between law enforcement, insurance, and other auto related companies to reduce auto theft. A.T.A.C. is a subcommittee of the Western States Auto Theft Investigators Association, Southern Chapter.

19th Annual Awards Presentation Brunch

Thursday, May 28, 2009 9:00 a.m. - The Irvine Marriott Hotel

Those participating included:
Pledge of Allegiance: Irvine Police Department Honor Guard
  Assistant Chief Steve Beeuwsaert, CHP Border Division
Invocation: Chaplain Kathleen Kooiman, Orange County Sheriff's Department
Introduction: Lieutenant Hector Paredes, CHP Border Auto Theft
Master of Ceremonies: Mr. Pat Haslam, Real Orange KOCE-TV Public Television 
Guest Speaker:  Sheriff Sandra Hutchins, Orange County Sheriff's Department
Presentation of Awards: Lieutenant Hector Paredes, CHP Border Auto Theft
  Sergeant Dennis Frias, CHP Border FEAR
  Sergeant Steve Reyes, CHP Border CTIP
Special Presentation: Mr. John Sackrison, Executive Director Orange County Automobile Dealers Assn
Mr. Ted Saraf, LoJack Corporation
Irvine Police Department Honor Guard Presenting the ColorsATAC Chairperson Hector ParedesATAC Chairperson CHP Border Lieutenant  Hector Paredes introduced the Irvine Police Department Honor Guard who presented the United States and California flags on the front stage.  Lieutenant Paredes then introduced CHP Border Division Assistant Chief Steve Beeuwsaert who led the Pledge of Allegiance. 

Lieutenant Paredes then introduced Orange County Sheriff's Department Chaplain Kathleen Kooiman who gave the invocation.

Lieutenant Paredes then explained that ATAC was a subcommittee of the Western States Auto Theft Investigators (WSATI) Association, allowing ATAC to provide donors with the benefits of a tax free organization.

Lieutenant Paredes spoke about the changes that took place in this year's selection process.  Lieutenant Paredes said that significant pro-active contributions by officers to reduce auto theft, combined with a higher emphasis on "rolling stolens" and significant case highlights were the elements of the criteria to be considered. 

Master of Ceremonies Pat HaslamLieutenant Paredes then introduced the Master of Ceremonies Pat Haslam.  Mr. Haslam has been the voice of Orange County ATAC for the past 19 years.  Mr. Haslam gave an opening address and then welcomed everyone to avail themselves of the breakfast buffet.

After the brunch, Pat Haslam then introduced Mr. Ted Saraf, Law Enforcement Liaison for LoJack Corporation, who conducted the drawing of tickets for a LoJack tracing unit.  LoJack donated a LoJack tracking unit to A.T.A.C. to be given as a door prize for attending the event.  Mr. Saraf drew the ticket of Cypress Police Department Captain Jackie Gomez-Whiteley.

Pat Haslam then introduced the guest speaker, Orange County Sheriff Sandra Hutchins

The awards awaiting the calling of the names...Pat Haslam then announced the Orange County 2008 Recovery Officer of the Year Recipients as Lieutenant Paredes presented the numerous award plaques and recognition certificates to each of the winners.

Orange County Automobile Dealers Association Executive Director Mr. John Sackrison was then called to the stage to make a presentation to the top five officers recognized during the awards presentation. 

This year's recipients were (by agency):

ORANGE COUNTY 2008 RECOVERY OFFICER OF THE YEAR RECIPIENTS:

Anaheim Police Department Detective Kevin Flanagan
Brea Police Department Detective Richard Salcido
Buena Park Police Department Officer Pedro Montez
California Highway Patrol - Capistrano Area Officer Eric Martinez
California Highway Patrol - Santa Ana Area Officer Scott Smith
California Highway Patrol - Westminster Area Officer Sean Taketa
Cal State Fullerton Police Department Corporal Wayne LeQuang
Costa Mesa Police Department Officer Brian Hernandez
Cypress Police Department Officer Mike McBain
Fountain Valley Police Department Officer Joshua McMahan
Fullerton Police Department Officer Tim Haid
Garden Grove Police Department Officer Brian Devor
Huntington Beach Police Department Officer Greg Reese
Irvine Police Department Officer Tanya Ayalde
Laguna Beach Police Department Officer David Gensemer
La Habra Police Department Officer Michael Costanzo
La Palma Police Department Officer Brian Rapp
Los Alamitos Police Department Corporal Chris Anderson
Newport Beach Police Department Officer Jeff Perkins
Orange County Sheriff's Department - North Deputy Saul Cardenas
Orange County Sheriff's Department - South Deputy Joseph Kantar
Orange County Sheriff's Department - West Deputy Trent Hoffman
Orange Police Department Officer Tyler Ray
Placentia Police Department Officer Fernando Flores
Santa Ana Police Department No Nominee
Seal Beach Police Department Officer Phil Gonshak
Tustin Police Department Officer Ian Wise
Westminster Police Department Officer Dan McCarthy
Each of the Officers and Deputies listed above were honored for recovering the most stolen vehicles at their agencies during 2008.  Combined, these officers recovered 185 vehicles in 2008, valued at over $2,290,633.00 and arrested 77 people.

The Top Five Honorees were:

Officer Kevin Flanagan of the Anaheim Police Department was honored as the Officer recovering the most stolen vehicles throughout the entire county, 34 vehicles, including 12 "rolling stolens," resulting in 18 arrests, with a recovery value of approximately $612,000.00.  Officer Kevin Flanagan has been with Anaheim Police Department for 11 years.  Over the past several years, Officer Flanagan has consistently been one of the top producers in stolen vehicle recovery and arrests at the Anaheim Police Department.  Officer Flanagan was the 2007 ATAC Auto Theft Recovery Officer of the year recipient. 

On March 5, 2008, Officer Flanagan observed a stolen Honda Civic being driven in a known gang area.  Officer Flanagan initiated an enforcement stop which resulted in a pursuit through the neighborhood.  The suspect bailed out of the vehicle and fled on foot.  Officer Flanagan gave chase on foot and apprehended the suspect, who was charged with several felonies.  On April 17, 2008, Officer Flanagan located a stolen vehicle in a motel parking lot.  Officer Flanagan conducted surveillance on the vehicle and two suspects were eventually taken into custody and charged with numerous crimes.  As a result of Officer Flanagan’s hard work and diligence, he has been assigned as a detective in the Anaheim Police Department’s Auto Theft Detail.

Officer Flanagan was presented with a check for his designated charity, the Orange County Boys and Girls Club of Anaheim, by John Sackrison, Executive Director of the Orange County Automobile Dealers Association.  Anaheim Police Department Chief John Welter was then called to the podium to receive the Perpetual Winner's Award that goes to the Top Officer's Department to be displayed until next year's Awards Ceremony.

Officer Pedro Montez of the Buena Park Police Department was honored as the Officer recovering the second most stolen vehicles in the county.  Officer Montez was unable to attend.  On May 16, 2008, Officer Montez observed two pedestrians climbing out of a flood control.  These two subjects were identified as known gang members who were both on probation.  During a pat down search Officer Montez found four gold earrings with diamonds.  One of the suspects was in possession of two shaved keys.  During the subsequent investigation, Officer Montez was able to determine the two suspects had just committed a residential burglary.  Later one of the two suspects led officers to three unoccupied, reported stolen vehicles and implicated his associate in the vehicle theft crimes.  Officer Montez will be presented with a check for his designated charity, the Orange County Boys and Girls Club of Buena Park, by John Sackrison, Executive Director of the Orange County Automobile Dealers Association. 

Officer Daniel McCarthy of the Westminster Police Department was honored as the Officer recovering the third (tie) most stolen vehicles throughout the county.  Officer McCarthy was working patrol when he observed two males in a Toyota Camry driving toward him.  As the vehicle passed, Officer McCarthy noticed that both men appeared to be very nervous and watched his vehicle as they drove pass him.  Officer McCarthy made a u-turn in an attempt to follow the vehicle.   While Officer McCarthy was making the turn, he observed the subject’s vehicle make an abrupt right turn into an apartment complex.  Officer McCarthy located the vehicle, which was unoccupied and confirmed the vehicle was stolen.  The suspects left their picture identification cards inside the vehicle.  Officer McCarthy quickly established a perimeter and the two suspects were detained.  Officer McCarthy identified both suspects, who were arrested and charged with several crimes.  The driver was later sentenced to State prison.  Officer McCarthy earned his fourth 10851 pin during the calendar year and this is his second time being recognized by the ATAC Committee for his efforts in combating vehicle theft.  Officer McCarthy was presented with a check for his designated charity, the Orange County Boys and Girls Club of Westminster, by John Sackrison, Executive Director of the Orange County Automobile Dealers Association. 

Officer Tyler Ray of the Orange Police Department was honored as the Officer recovering the third (tie) most stolen vehicles in the county.  Officer Ray led all of Orange Police Department uniformed officers in stolen vehicle arrests and recoveries.  Officer Ray arrested 4 suspects for driving stolen vehicles and recovered several other unoccupied stolen vehicles during 2008.  In February 2008, Officer Ray took a stolen vehicle report and within hours located the unoccupied vehicle in another part of the city.  Officer Ray took the initiative to contact officers working in plainclothes, who set up surveillance on the vehicle.  The suspect returned to the vehicle and was arrested and charged with vehicle theft and street gang enhancements.  Officer Ray’s tenacity and teamwork resulted in the arrest and prosecution of a repeat offender.  Officer Ray was presented with a check for his designated charity, the Orange County Boys and Girls Club of Orange, by John Sackrison, Executive Director of the Orange County Automobile Dealers Association. 

Deputy Trent Hoffman of the Orange County Sheriff's Department, Stanton Police Services, was honored as the Officer recovering the fifth most stolen vehicles in the county.  Deputy Hoffman recovered 15 stolen vehicles during 2008, 3 of which were occupied.  One driver fled on foot and was not captured; another was occupied by a parolee-at-large who was taken into custody.  And a third  rolling stolen was eventually determined to be a civil matter.  Deputy Hoffman also recovered twelve other stolen vehicles in various locations within the city of Stanton. Deputy Hoffman was presented with a check for his designated charity, the Orange County Boys and Girls Club of Stanton, by John Sackrison, Executive Director of the Orange County Automobile Dealers Association. 

Mr. John Sackrison, Deputy Trent Hoffman, Officer Tyler Ray, Officer Daniel McCarthy, Officer Kevin Flanagan

ATAC also recognized one additional officer for his efforts, presenting him with an Honorable Mention plaque.

CHP Westminster Officer Sean Taketa was recognized for his diligence.  On July 7th, 2008, Officer Taketa responded to a “Lojack” hit on a stolen 1997 Honda Accord. Officer Taketa followed the signal and located the Honda in a carwash stall.  As he approached, he observed two females and a male washing the hood area of the Honda.  Officer Taketa initiated a felony stop and requested assistance.  All three persons were arrested and subsequently admitted that they had stolen three additional vehicles during the night and had been on an auto theft / burglary binge.  Due to Officer Taketa’s interview skills, he learned of the locations of the outstanding stolen vehicles and all three were recovered.  Officer Taketa identified stolen property within the vehicles and assisted eight burglary victims as well as the victims of the auto thefts in recovering their property.  All in a days work for Officer Taketa.

Lieutenant Paredes then introduced and thanked the Orange County Auto Theft Advisory Committee members who put together the awards presentation; Mr. Dan Brogdon, Ms. Martha Jones Joseph, and Ms. Geraldine Gary of the Automobile Club of Southern California; Ms. Diana Rummel, Beach Paving; Mr. Gustavo Cicarelli, Sergeant Dennis Frias, and Sergeant Steve Reyes of the California Highway Patrol; Special Agent Mark Winter, National Insurance Crime Bureau; Mr. Tony Ko, Toyota Motor Credit; Mr. Ted Saraf, LoJack Corporation.  Lieutenant Paredes also thanked Gary Labb and President Jim Williams of the Western States Auto Theft Investigators Association, Southern Chapter, for their continuing help and sponsorship of this event.  Gary was unable to attend due to a training commitment, while Jim doubled as the event photographer. 

Lieutenant Paredes then thanked the sponsors of this year's awards presentation, the Orange County Automobile Dealers Association, Executive Director John Sackrison; Toyota Financial Services, Mr. Anthony Ko; the National Insurance Crime Bureau, Mr. Ralph Lumpkin; and LoJack Corporation, Mr. Ted Saraf.

L-R:Mark Winter, Steve Reyes, Pat Haslam, Diana Rummel, Geri Gary, Gus Cicarelli. Martha Jones-Joseph, Tony Ko, Ted Saraf, Dennis Frias, John Sackrison, Hector Paredes
For Photos from the Awards Ceremony Click Here
Special thanks go to the following organizations and businesses for participating in and sponsoring Orange County’s Auto Theft Advisory Committee and its Officers of the Year Program:
Automobile Club of Southern California Orange County Auto Dealers Association
Beach Paving, Inc. Orange County Auto Theft Taskforce (OCATT)
California Highway Patrol – Border Division Orange County Sheriff’s Department
LoJack Corporation Toyota/Lexus Financial Services
National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) Western States Auto Theft Investigators, Southern Chapter

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