AUTO THEFT ADVISORY COMMITTEE (A.T.A.C.)
SAN DIEGO COUNTY VEHICLE THEFT
2014 RECOVERY OFFICER OF THE YEAR AWARDS PRESENTATION BRUNCH
Sponsored by the San Diego 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.


25th Annual Awards Presentation Brunch

Thursday, March 19, 2015 9:30 a.m. - The Prado at Balboa Park

Those participating included:
Pledge of Allegiance: Lieutenant Jason Penner, CHP Border Auto Theft
Invocation: Father Russell Martin, San Diego County Sheriff's Department
Introduction: Lieutenant Jason Penner, CHP Border Auto Theft
Mistress of Ceremonies: Ms. Monica Zech, El Cajon Public Information Officer
Guest Speaker:  Assistant Chief John Antillon, California Highway Patrol Border Division
Presentation of Awards: Lieutenant Jason Penner, CHP Border Auto Theft
  Brandi Wade and Tiffany Jones, CHP Border Division
ATAC Chairperson Lieutenant Jason Penner
ATAC Chairperson CHP Border Division Lieutenant Jason Penner led the Pledge of Allegiance. 

Lieutenant Penner then introduced Father Russell Martin who gave the invocation.

Lieutenant Penner explained  that the Auto Theft Advisory Committee, or ATAC, is a partnership between law enforcement agencies, government, insurance companies, the San Diego New Car Dealer's Association, car rental companies, and other related businesses who share a common goal to reduce vehicle thefts in San Diego County.

Lieutenant Penner 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 non-profit organization.

Lieutenant Penner then introduced and thanked the San Diego County Auto Theft Advisory Committee members who put together the awards presentation; Ms. Martha Jones-Joseph and Ms. Geraldine Ward of the Automobile Club of Southern California; Ms. Brandi Wade, and Ms. Tiffany Jones of the California Highway Patrol. 

Lieutenant Penner then thanked the sponsors of this year's awards presentation, the Automobile Club of Southern California, Locator Technologies, LoJack Corporation, the Prado at Balboa Park, VINMonitor, and the Western States Auto Theft Investigators (WSATI).

Lieutenant Penner then wanted to thank all the ATAC members who volunteer their time each year.

Lieutenant Penner then held a raffle and recognized the Prado at Balboa Park for providing a gift certificate for the raffle, as well as the LoJack Corporation for providing a LoJack recovery system for the raffle.
Mistress of Ceremonies Monica Zech
Lieutenant Penner then introduced the Mistress of Ceremonies, Monica Zech. Ms. Zech has graciously emceed the event 23 out of the 25 years and has become an integral part of the Committee. She is the Public Information Officer for the City of El Cajon. She has been with the city for over ten years, joining the City in August 2001. She especially enjoys her role as a safety speaker and researcher on driving safety, speaking at schools, company safety meetings and conferences, and at military safety stand-downs locally and nationally. Prior to that, she was a TV and radio journalist for some 30 years before she made the switch to El Cajon. In joining the City, Monica left a 30 year career in broadcast news, the last 18 years as an award winning TV and Radio air traffic reporter.  She was San Diego's first female airborne traffic reporter, and San Diego's first television traffic reporter for the NBC and ABC local news affiliates.  Ms. Zech gave an opening address and spoke about this year's selection process.  Ms. Zech 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.  Ms. Zech welcomed everyone to avail themselves of the brunch.
Guest Speaker, California Highway Patrol Assistant Chief John Antillon
After the buffet, Monica Zech then introduced the guest speaker, California Highway Patrol Assistant Chief John Antillon.

Monica Zech then announced the recipients as Lieutenant Jason Penner, with Brandi Wade, and Tiffany Jones assisting, handed out the numerous award plaques and recognition certificates to each of the recipients.
 

This year's nominees are (alphabetically):
 

SAN DIEGO COUNTY 2014 RECOVERY OFFICER OF THE YEAR NOMINEES:
Officer Juan Alva Escondido Police Department
Officer Dannie Bihum *9 San Diego Police Department, Eastern Division
Officer Steven Bourasa *3 San Diego Police Department, Northeastern Division
Deputy James Breneman *3 San Diego County Sheriff's Department, Ramona Station
Officer Joe Camacho *2 National City Police Department
Officer Andrew Campbell San Diego Police Department, Northwestern Division
Deputy Jesse Conard San Diego County Sheriff's Department, Fallbrook Station
Officer John Cortez San Diego Police Department, Southeastern Division
Deputy Jeff Cruz San Diego County Sheriff's Department, Valley Center Station
Officer Jonathan Deering Chula Vista Police Department
Deputy Tyler Eikermann San Diego County Sheriff's Department, Vista Station
Deputy Joseph Garay *2 San Diego County Sheriff's Department, Imperial Beach Station
Deputy Isaiah Garden *2 San Diego County Sheriff's Department, Rancho San Diego Station
Officer Carlos Gaytan La Mesa Police Department
Officer Jordan Good *2 Coronado Police Department
Officer Cody Green Carlsbad Police Department
Corporal Tom Hendricks *3 San Diego County Sheriff's Department, San Marcos Station
Deputy Devin A. Kusler *3 San Diego County Sheriff's Department, Santee Station
Corporal Clifford LaPlant San Diego County Sheriff's Department, Alpine Station
Officer Jason Montoya  San Diego Police Department, Northern Division
Officer Juan Mora *3 California Highway Patrol, Oceanside Area
Officer Daniel Oxley California Highway Patrol, San Diego Area
Officer Samson Pak El Cajon Police Department
Officer David Ramirez San Diego Police Department, Traffic Division
Officer Michael Roberts *14 Oceanside Police Department
Deputy Casey Ryan San Diego County Sheriff's Department, Encinitas Station
Deputy Darin Smith *2 San Diego County Sheriff's Department, Poway Station
Officer Roger Stonier *8 San Diego Police Department, Central Division
Officer Mauricio Troche *2 San Diego Police Department, Southern Division
Officer Christopher Turner California Highway Patrol, El Cajon Area
Officer Kyle Valente San Diego Police Department, Mid-City Division
Officer Eddie Wallin *3 San Diego Police Department, Western Division
*# Indicates the Number of Times Nominated for an ATAC Award
In 2014, these 32 officers, representing almost every law enforcement agency in San Diego County, arrested a total of 100 vehicle theft suspects and recovered 632 vehicles with a total recovery value of $5,962,976.00.

The Top Five Honorees were:

Deputy Devin Kusler, San Diego County Sheriff's Department, Santee Station, was honored as the Officer recovering the most stolen vehicles in the entire county.   Deputy Kusler has been with the Sheriff's Department for 6.5 years and has led the Santee Station in stolen vehicle recoveries the last 3 years.  He often assists the Regional Auto Theft Task Force with providing information on stolen vehicles and auto thieves in the area he works. Deputy Kusler has been the recipient of four 10851 pin awards. Due to Deputy Kuslerís experience and expertise in vehicle theft investigations, other patrol Deputies often solicit his opinion and advice. Deputy Kusler has proven himself as an invaluable resource and he will be considered an asset wherever he is stationed within the San Diego County Sheriff's Department. Lieutenant Karen Stubkjaer, San Diego County Sheriff's Department, accepted the ATAC Perpetual Plaque which will remain at the department for the next year.

Corporal Tom Hendricks, San Diego County Sheriff's Department, San Marcos Station, was honored as the Officer recovering the second most stolen vehicles in the county.  This is Corporal Henricks's third nomination for an ATAC award.

Officer Joseph Camacho, National City Police Department, was honored as the Officer recovering the third most stolen vehicles in the county. This is Officer Camacho's second nomination for an ATAC award.

Deputy Isaiah Garden, San Diego County Sheriff's Department, Rancho San Diego Station, was honored as the Officer recovering the fourth most stolen vehicles in the county.  This is Deputy Garden's second nomination for an ATAC award.

Officer Juan Mora, California Highway Patrol, San Diego Area, was honored as the Officer recovering the fifth most stolen vehicles in the county.  This is Officer Mora's third nomination for an ATAC award.

Honorable Mention Recipient:

Officer Samson Pak, with the El Cajon Police Department was presented an Honorable Mention for his excellent police work.

Special recognition went to San Diego Police Department Eastern Division Retired Senior Volunteer Patrol Officers Gregg and Melody Stoner for their outstanding contribution in battling vehicle theft.  They patrolled as a team in the License Plate Reader vehicle and were responsible for recovering 122 stolen vehicles which resulted in 10 arrests. In 2014 they made 237 separate patrols and have dedicated a combined total of 4,040 patrol hours in their search for stolen vehicles.   They have read 1,470,115 licenses plates. 

Special recognition also went to the Baja California State Preventive Police, who played an important role in combating vehicle theft in the San Diego and Tijuana region.  Cooperation between the California Highway Patrol and the Baja California State Preventive Police has led to the recovery of numerous stolen vehicles and the arrest of vehicle theft suspects.  The Baja California State Preventive Police was commended for their contribution in battling vehicle theft.  Accepting this recognition were Baja California Secretary of Public Safety Daniel de la Rosa Anaya, Director Marco Montoya, and Commander Rodolfo Luna.

San Diego ATAC Committee
For Photos from the Awards Ceremony, Please Click Here

Special thanks to the following organizations for participating and sponsoring the San Diego County Auto Theft Advisory Committee (A.T.A.C.) and its Officer of the Year Program:

Automobile Club of Southern California
LoJack Corporation
California Highway Patrol
The Prado at Balboa Park
Locator Technologies, LLC
VINMonitor
Western States Auto Theft Investigators, Southern Chapter

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