SAN DIEGO COUNTY VEHICLE THEFT
2017 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
of the Western States Auto Theft Investigators Association, Southern
Wednesday, March 14, 2018 9:30 a.m. - The Prado at Balboa Park
ATAC Chairperson, California Highway Patrol Border Division Lieutenant Tom Eglin, led the Pledge of Allegiance.
Lieutenant Eglin then introduced San Diego County Sheriff's Department Chaplain Herb Smith who gave the invocation.
Lieutenant Eglin 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 Eglin 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 Eglin 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 Eglin then thanked the sponsors of this year's awards presentation, the Automobile Club of Southern California, Avis Budget Group, Ball Automotive Group, California Highway Patrol, CARFAX for Police, Enterprise Rent-A-Car, Frank Motors Group, Leo Hamel Fine Jewelry & Estate Sales, LBA Investigations, Locator Technologies, LoJack Corporation, New Car Dealers Association San Diego, RSM Consulting, the Prado at Balboa Park, and the Western States Auto Theft Investigators (WSATI), Southern Chapter.
Lieutenant Eglin then wanted to thank all the ATAC members who volunteer their time each year.
Lieutenant Eglin recognized one of the original committee members who started San Diego ATAC back in 1990, Retired CHP Sergeant Benny Price.
Lieutenant Eglin 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.
Lieutenant Eglin then introduced the Mistress of Ceremonies, Monica Zech. Ms. Zech has graciously emceed our event 26 out of the 28 years and has become an integral part of our Committee. Monica has more over 40 years in media communications, both in broadcasting and her current position as Public Information Officer for the City of El Cajon. Her career encompasses many firsts — she was the first woman in San Diego County to work as an air traffic reporter for Automobile Club of Southern California and San Diego’s first Television air traffic reporter, working for both Channel 10 and Channel 39, and ten local radio stations.
Shortly after she began her work as an air traffic reporter, Ms. Zech saw the need for driving safety education and soon spoke to students, parents, community members and the military both locally and nationally on driving issues. Ms. Zech has touched countless lives with her community service and in her professional capacity. She has delivered over 6,000 lectures on aggressive driving, texting while driving, and driving under the influence of alcohol and other drugs. She knows the dangers of unsafe driving first-hand. Her family has been impacted twice by DUI drivers. She herself was almost paralyzed in a crash with a stop sign runner in 2003, but, she speaks on behalf of all those killed and injured in preventable crashes.
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.
After the buffet, Monica Zech then introduced the guest speaker, National City Police Department Chief Manuel Rodriguez, who gave a short speech.
Following Chief Rodriguez' speech, Monica Zech then announced the San Diego County 2017 Recovery Officer of the Year recipients as Lieutenant Jason Eglin, with Brandi Wade and Tiffany Jones assisting, handed out the numerous award plaques and recognition certificates to each of the recipients.
recipients are (alphabetically):
|Officer Bryan Baker *3||San Diego Police Department, Mid-City Division|
|Officer Dannie Bihum *12||San Diego Police Department, Eastern Division|
|Deputy James Breneman *5||San Diego County Sheriff's Department, Ramona Station|
|Deputy David Bruner||San Diego County Sheriff's Department, Lemon Grove Station|
|Officer Christopher Bunch||California Highway Patrol, El Cajon Area|
|Officer Marco Calderilla *2||San Diego Police Department, Northern Division|
|Deputy Scott Crane *4||San Diego County Sheriff's Department, San Marcos Station|
|Officer Johnathan Deering *3||Chula Vista Police Department|
|Officer Kevin Engelke||Coronado Police Department|
|Officer David Estrada||Oceanside Police Department|
|Officer Carlos Gaytan *4||La Mesa Police Department|
|Deputy Robert Harrell||San Diego County Sheriff's Department, Fallbrook Station|
|Officer Robert Henry||San Diego Police Department, Southern Division|
|Officer Nate Horton||Carlsbad Police Department|
|Officer Justin Hudnall||San Diego Police Department, Southeastern Division|
|Officer Jayson Hughes *2||California Highway Patrol, Oceanside Area|
|Officer Eric Hungarter||San Diego Police Department, Western Division|
|Deputy Derrick Jones *3||San Diego County Sheriff's Department, Poway Station|
|Deputy Robert Kastelic||San Diego County Sheriff's Department, Santee Station|
|Corporal Devin A. Kusler *6||San Diego County Sheriff's Department, Alpine Station|
|Officer Paul McClain||San Diego State University Police Department|
|Deputy Robert Miller||San Diego County Sheriff's Department, North Coastal Station|
|Officer Rowdy Pauu||National City
|Deputy Cody Roberts||San Diego County Sheriff's Department, Vista Station|
|Deputy Carlos Rueda||San Diego County Sheriff's Department, Imperial Beach Station|
|Deputy Mike Saunders *2||San Diego County Sheriff's Department, Lakeside Station|
|Deputy Scott Seaman||San Diego County Sheriff's Department, Rancho San Diego Station|
|Officer Kevin Speicher||San Diego Police Department, Northeastern Division|
|Deputy Olivia Steinmeyer||San Diego County Sheriff's Department, Valley Center Station|
|Officer Roger Stonier *11||San Diego Police Department, Central Division|
|Officer Richard Vargas||California Highway Patrol, San Diego Area|
|Officer Jordan Walker *2||El Cajon Police Department|
|Officer Andrew Wyse *4||Escondido Police Department|
|In 2017, these 33 officers,
representing almost every law enforcement agency in San Diego County,
a total of 139 vehicle
theft suspects and
with a total recovery
value of $4,148,413.
The Top Five Honorees were:
Officer Jordan Walker, El Cajon Police Department, was honored as the Officer recovering the most stolen vehicles in the entire county. Officer Walker joined the El Cajon Police Department in 2013. His current assignment is with the K9 Unit with his partner, K9 Jester. Officer Walker was the Rookie of the Year in 2013 and was the recipient of a 2015 ATAC nomination. One of the 38 vehicles recovered in 2017 by Officer Walker was taken during a residential burglary. Due to Officer Walker's recovery of this vehicle, the residential burglary case was able to be solved. Officer Walker was named Officer of the Month for August 2017 for his hard work and dedication to finding stolen vehicles. In 2017, Officer Walker recovered a total of 38 vehicles, including 9 occupied stolen vehicles, with a recovery value of $307,800. This is Officer Walker's first ATAC award and 2nd nomination. El Cajon Police Department Chief Jeff Davis accepted the Auto Theft Advisory Committee's perpetual plaque which will remain at El Cajon Police Department until next year's ATAC Awards.
Corporal Devin Kusler, San Diego County Sheriff's Department, Rancho Alpine Station, was honored as the Officer recovering the second most stolen vehicles in the county. This is Deputy Kusler's sixth nomination for an ATAC award.
Deputy Scott Crane, San Diego County Sheriff's Department, San Marcos Station, was honored as the Officer recovering the third most stolen vehicles in the county. This is Deputy Crane’s fourth nomination for an ATAC award.
Deputy Scott Seaman, 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 Seaman’s first nomination for an ATAC award.
Officer Bryan Baker, San Diego Police Department, Mid-City Division, was honored as the Officer recovering the fifth most stolen vehicles in the county. This is Baker’s third nomination for an ATAC award.
Congratulations to all our San Diego County Award recipients. Thank you for your dedication to the citizens of San Diego County. Your efforts are making a difference.
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: