Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly today honored 43 members of the New York City Police Department and recognized 12 commands for exceptional performance at the annual NYPD Medal Day ceremony inside One Police Plaza.
“The acts of bravery, exceptional valor and dedication to duty we are recognizing today illustrate why New York remains the safest big city in America,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “These officers have gone well above and beyond the call of duty in protecting the lives and safety of us all. Their courage and professionalism, and the professionalism of the entire department, is why last year we achieved a new record low for the number of murders in our city and why we also had the fewest number of shootings in our city in recorded history.”
“We honor those who answered the call of duty and rose above it. For their courage and dedication, these officers have earned the police department’s highest acclamations,” said Commissioner Kelly. “All of today’s honorees put will before fear and performed extraordinary service for the people of this city. For that we say thank you, and offer our most sincere congratulations on this special day.”
Detective Ivan Marcano received the Medal of Honor, the Police Department’s highest award, for his actions last October when he intervened in an armed robbery in progress he observed while off-duty. Despite being shot in the chest by the perpetrators, Detective Marcano managed to warn bystanders, and in a remarkable display of marksmanship and calm under fire, shot one of the assailants while applying pressure to his own wound, and gave chase to the two remaining suspects until he encountered an ambulance and was transported to a hospital where doctors removed a .380-caliber bullet from his chest.
Other members of the service who were awarded Tuesday:
Police Combat Cross
The Department’s second highest award, bestowed for extraordinary acts of heroism while engaged in personal struggle with an armed adversary under circumstances of imminent personal hazard. Twenty-three members of the service including two retirees, received the Police Combat Cross:
Captain Norman Grandstaff, Patrol Borough Brooklyn North
Then-Police Officer Grandstaff pursued on foot, struggled with and apprehended a perpetrator who had fired upon police with a 9-millimeter high-capacity machine gun. Then-Officer Grandstaff and two other responding officers also recovered the gun. It was Christmas morning, 2002 in the 79th Precinct.
Detective Ralph Sherlock, Firearms Suppression Division;
Detective Andro Stambuk, 19th Precinct Detective Squad;
Police Officer Steven Ricca, 105th Precinct;
Police Officer Jose Riera, Police Service Area 5;
Retired Lieutenant James Cosgrove, Vice Enforcement Division
September 28, 2005: These members of a Manhattan North anti-crime unit were fired upon by an armed perpetrator who fled into an apartment complex, where PSA 5 officers encountered him and also were fired upon. The officers returned fire, the suspect was apprehended and the firearm was recovered.
Police Officer Michael Sinner, 102nd Precinct
December 26, 2006: After responding to a call of a gunpoint robbery in the 102nd Precinct, Officer Sinner and his partner were fired upon by a male suspect fleeing on a bike. The perpetrator was apprehended in a backyard and his loaded 9mm pistol recovered.
Detective Daniel Mallick, 77th Precinct Detective Squad
July 7, 2007: Detective Mallick and his partner responded to a call of shots fired at a police officer. As they approached, the perpetrator turned his gun toward them, and then-Police Officer Mallick fired, striking the suspect, and removed his weapon. The suspect had earlier that day shot an innocent bystander and an Emergency Medical Technician, carjacked multiple vehicles and fired his gun multiple times at an apartment door.
Sergeant Robert Bracero, 113th Precinct
January 23, 2008: While on patrol, Sergeant Bracero and his partner observed and began to approach a group of youths making gang signs when one of the males in the group produced a gun and fired several times into a crowded bus stop, striking one man in the neck. The perpetrator then ran toward the officers and fired at close range. Sergeant Bracero returned fire and pursued the gunman on foot while providing a description over the radio of the suspect, who was apprehended. The suspect’s gun also was recovered.
Lieutenant Seth Lynch, 46th Precinct and Sergeant Daryl Melhado, 25th Precinct
April 20, 2009: Then-Sergeant Lynch and then-Police Officer Mehado while on patrol in the 40th Precinct responded to a call of a man with a gun inside an apartment. The suspect was holding another male at gunpoint, refused the officers’ repeated orders to drop his weapon and turned his gun at them. After an exchange of gunfire, the perpetrator was arrested.
Police Officer Francisco Jacquez, Police Service Area 1
May 31, 2010: Officer Jacquez while on bike patrol in a public housing development was fired upon by a man exiting a building. He returned fire and pursued the man who fled into another nearby apartment, where he was positively identified and apprehended.
Police Officer Kevin Desormeau, Queens Gang Squad
January 29, 2011: Officer Desormeau and his partner stopped to question a suspicious male in the 106th Precinct when the male removed a gun from his waistband and fired multiple times at and then fled from the officers, who pursued him on foot. The perpetrator pointed his gun at Officer Desormeau who returned fire. The suspect was arrested by responding officers and his firearm was recovered.
Undercover Detective, Narcotics Borough Bronx
July 2011: While conducting a narcotics operation in the Bronx, the undercover detective was held at gunpoint by a perpetrator who originally agreed to “sell” drugs to him, who later shot at the undercover but missed. The undercover managed to retrieve his gun and fire, preventing further harm or injury. The perpetrator died as a result of injury.
Sergeant Mourad Mourad, Patrol Borough Brooklyn South Specialized Unit;
Police Officer Kathleen Correa, PBBS Task Force;
Retired Detective Daniel Altieri, Emergency Service Squad 7
September 23, 2011: The officers were fired upon multiple times by a suspect armed with a .38 caliber handgun who then fled police. They returned fire. The perpetrator was arrested, and his weapon and a bullet resistant vest recovered.
Sergeant Michael Miller, 81st Precinct
October 8, 2011: Sergeant Miller and his partner while on anti-crime patrol stopped a speeding livery cab and observed one passenger reaching toward his waistband. When they removed the passengers from the vehicle, Sergeant Miller observed a bulge in one subject’s waistband and frisked him, discovering a firearm. As he began to take the man into custody, the suspect violently resisted, grabbed his gun and pressed it to the sergeant’s stomach. Sergeant Miller grabbed the gun cylinder as the perpetrator repeatedly attempted to fire, and managed to wedge his finger between the hammer and cylinder to prevent it from discharging. The tip of Sergeant Miller’s finger was crushed the bone split in three pieces. Eventually the perpetrator was subdued and arrested.
Sergeant Kevin Brennan, Criminal Intelligence Section
January 31, 2012: then-Police Officer Brennan was shot in his head by a perpetrator wanted in connection with a homicide. The night he was shot, police were responding to a call of shots fired and had observed the suspect run into a housing development building. Officer Brennan pursued him into a stairwell, tackled him and attempted to place him under arrest when the perpetrator shot him at point-blank range. He was later apprehended and the gun was discovered to have been used during a homicide. Officer Brennan had a piece of bullet removed from his skull and returned to duty; two weeks ago he returned to the scene of the shooting with prosecutors and while there, he helped to arrest a pair of home invasion robbery suspects, one of whom was armed with a 9-millimeter handgun, which Sergeant Brennan and his partner seized without a shot fired.
Detective Kevin Herlihy, Warrant Section
February 14, 2012: As a member of the Queens Warrant Section Violent Felony Squad, Det. Herlihy identified a suspect who was sought for shooting his ex-girlfriend’s daughter in the face. When Det. Herlihy said, “Police, don’t move!” the suspect reached into his waistband and fired multiple times at Det. Herlihy, striking him in the arm. Det. Herlihy returned fire, fatally striking the suspect.
Police Officer Thomas Dunne, Warrant Section;
Police Officer Thomas Richards, Intelligence Operations and Analysis Section
February 27, 2012: While assigned to Police Service Area 4 in Lower Manhattan, the officers were patrolling a public housing complex and observed a man who was out of breath, appeared nervous and was adjusting his waistband. As they approached, the man pulled out a gun and fired at the officers, striking the gun magazine on Officer Richard’s gun belt. The officers returned fire and gave chase, and the wounded perpetrator later was located by a trail of blood, hiding in an apartment, where he was arrested.
Police Officer Brian Groves, Police Service Area 4
July 5, 2012: While conducting a vertical patrol in public housing, Officer Groves was shot by a perpetrator he encountered as he and his partner began their descent in the stairwell from the 23rd floor. Despite being shot at point-blank range, he pursued the gunman until chest pain and shortness of breath prevented him from further pursuit. The bullet resistant vest worn by Officer Groves saved his life, and he transmitted a description of the suspect over the radio, which helped police to apprehend the shooter.
Sergeant Craig Bier, Warrant Section
August 8, 2012: While assigned to the Queens Gang Squad, Sergeant Bier and his partner observed a suspicious male whom they originally noticed riding a bicycle flee on foot toward a nearby yard. The officers gave chase and Sergeant Bier caught up to the perpetrator, who fired multiple times, wounding the sergeant in both legs. Sgt. Bier returned fire and the perpetrator was later apprehended and charged with attempted murder.
Medal for Valor
The Department’s third highest award, granted for acts of outstanding personal bravery performed in the line of duty and at imminent personal hazard to life, under circumstances evincing disregard for personal consequence. Thirteen members of the service received the Medal for Valor:
Lieutenant Patrick Brown, 23rd Precinct Detective Squad
Sergeant Anthony Gulotta, Patrol Borough Brooklyn North
Sergeant Javier Rodriguez, 113th Precinct
Detective Fredric Daughtry, 63rd Precinct Detective Squad
Detective Alexander Grandstaff, 81st Precinct Detective Squad
Detective Vito Nicoletta, 75th Precinct Detective Squad
Police Officer Arvid Flores, 43rd Precinct
Police Officer Jason Jackson, 75th Precinct
Police Officer Zahid Mehmood, 78th Precinct Detective Squad
Police Officer Paul Mertens, Detective Borough Bronx
Police Officer Peter Naughton, Patrol Borough Queens North Specialized Units
Police Officer Richard Pengel, 25th Precinct Detective Squad
Police Officer Daniel Trione, 75th Precinct
Family members of Detective Fermin “Sonny” Archer received the Purple Shield on behalf of the 48-year-old first-grade detective who succumbed to injuries suffered during an automobile accident on duty in June 2011. Detective Archer served the City for 26 years in Transit Districts 2 and 3, Warrant Section, Office of the Deputy Commissioner, Operations; the Police Commissioner’s Office, New York County District Attorney’s Office and Detective Bureau’s Regional Fugitive Task Force.
Distinguished Service Medal
Conferred upon the family of a member of the service who succumbed to illness associated with exceptional duty, performed with great responsibility, under unusual hazard or demand. Five members of the service who succumbed to illnesses contracted following the rescue and recovery effort in the aftermath of the September 11th attacks were honored with the Distinguished Service Medal:
Captain Dennis Morales, Emergency Service Unit
Lieutenant Christopher Pupo, 41st Precinct
Detective Alick Herrmann, 100th Precinct Detective Squad
Sergeant Garrett Danza, Communications Division
Police Officer Denis McLarney, Brooklyn Court Section
Twelve commands were recognized for sustaining a high level of service in 2012:
Transit District 30
Auto Crime Division
Emergency Service Unit
Major Case Squad
Narcotics Borough Bronx
Quality Assurance Division