Merit and Citations Awards 2021

The Merit & Citation Awards Ceremony was held this morning at the Maine Criminal Justice Academy in Vassalboro. The ceremony is held to recognize past and present members of the Maine State Police, both civilian and sworn members, and citizens of Maine who have gone above and beyond what is expected of them.  

The awards include Trooper of the Year, Legendary Trooper, Leadership Award, Wounds Received, and the Colonel’s Award.

 

 

Det Greg RoyTrooper of the Year – Detective Greg Roy – MCU-N

As a member of the Major Crimes Unit North, Det. Roy has demonstrated compassion for victims and a deep desire for justice for offenders. He is well-respected by his peers, partners, resources and all who assist at all levels of work. He has worked tirelessly on some of the most difficult cases to come through the MCU, including numerous child-homicides. Additionally, he is the Commander of the Tactical Team, which are called to high-risk incidents and barricaded persons statewide.

Det. Roy is an instructor for the Basic Law Enforcement Training Program (BLETP) and Recruit Training Troop (RTT) at the Maine Criminal Justice Academy in Augusta, where he teaches numerous courses including. He has been instrumental in facilitating courses in the academy and with other law enforcement agencies in Maine. As commander of the Tactical Team, Roy has established and fostered relationships with Tactical Teams in Maine and has been asked to instruct them on various topics. He is actively involved in New England State Police Administrators Conference (NESPAC) instructing Basic and Advanced schools and is often relied on for his knowledge and expertise.

He has assisted with motorcade security and assistance to the secret service for visits from FLOTUS to Portland and Cape Elizabeth.  His list of accomplishments are so many that we couldn’t hope to compile them here and keep this short. Congratulations, Trooper of the Year, Det. Grey Roy.

 

Legendary Trooper GallantLegendary Trooper – Detective/Forensic Specialist Roy Gallant 

 

Legendary Trooper is the highest award a retired Trooper can achieve and many Troopers aspire to it. Detective and Forensic Specialist Roy Gallant was a tireless and exacting Forensic Ballistic Examiner who was always willing to help with a case and use his expertise to bring justice on an offender. He began his career in 1975 and retired in 1995, and during his tenure with the State Police he was known for responding to scenes and going to the lab at all hours to help crack a case or support his fellow Troopers. 

“Those who know Roy would appreciate what a capable Trooper Roy was and being able to rely on his competence in all situations was remarkable,” wrote Retired Det. Conrad McNaughton, another Legendary Trooper, in his recommendation of Gallant. “In 1983, Roy transferred to the Crime Lab and became one of the best firearms experts in New England. Through his expertise and persistence, he solved many homicides for the Maine State Police. Roy Gallant, without questions, was a great asset to not only the MSP, but to the State of Maine. Our friendship continues to this day.”

Det. Gallant was instrumental in helping the Maine State Crime Labe achieve it’s national accreditation in 1999 with the American Association of Crime Lab Directors. He was involved in the adoption of the National Integrated Ballistics Imaging System at the lab, which is a database that catalogues unique characteristics of bullets and is used to solve violent crimes involving firearms, this data is shared nationwide.

 

Leadership Award – Detective Sergeant Greg Mitchell – MCU-N

Sgt. Greg Mitchell MCU  N –  Sgt. Mitchell was promoted to Sgt of Section 5, MCU-N in September of 2020.  Throughout 2021, Sgt. Mitchell has had many obstacles to overcome.  First he was thrown two new Detectives in January of 2021 and Sgt. Mitchell took the time to develop a FTO process from scratch in order to make sure the new Detectives would get the training and direction they needed to be as successful as they could be.  While this is a new process, it is currently in the works to become a formal process for all MCU detectives.  Previous to this, a new Detective would be thrown to the wolves, so to speak, and left to learn much of the new position on their own which is much like drinking from a fire hose.  The new FTO process aims to be the standard moving forward and Sgt. Mitchell is the driving force behind this.
In addition to the FTO training, Sgt. Mitchell implemented a professional development day once a month for his section which consists of refreshers on best practices, case reviews, after action reviews, guest speakers and detective input.  Sgt. Mitchell organizes this training every month.

Working with our partner agencies is vital to our Departments success and Sgt. Mitchell recognizes this and facilitates working relationships with all our counter parts at the local police departments and Sheriff’s Office in his area.  Developing and keeping those relationships is not an easy feat and takes constant communication and working together.  One example of this was while working a death case with a local PD, Sgt. Mitchell recognized a training need and he developed and presented a training for them so that they would be better prepared the next time.  

In addition to his Sgt. responsibilities and running a busy Section, Sgt. Mitchell continued to handle a large volume of case work, including 10 infant or child deaths and serious injuries.  These types of cases are the most demanding both physically and emotionally for Detectives and Sgt. Mitchell was in charge of each of them and brought them all to a conclusion.  Sgt. Mitchell recognized the toll these cases take on Detectives and made sure that they were cared for and continues to watch out for them.  
Sgt. Mitchell is a shining example of  the concept of servant leadership, which we as leaders strive for.  In a nutshell, this means putting those you work with before you and making sure they are successful and happy and well taken care of.  

 

Special Awards of Commendation

Troopers Daniel Worcester and Jarrett MacKinnon – Troop G – Whose vigilance and persistence helped saved the life of a young girl whose mother was in mental crisis

In June, 2021,  Tr. Daniel Worcester and Tr. Jarrett MacKinnon attempted to look for a vehicle on I-95 southbound from Wells, in which an 8-year-old girl called 911 stating her mother was having in mental crisis  and took her from her home. The girl was believed to be in danger and gave updated locations from signs she saw on the highway. The search entered into Massachusetts where radio contact became difficult and information continued to be relayed by phone to Tr. MacKinnon and Tr. Worcester.   Tr. MacKinnon stopped the vehicle on I-95 in Newburyport, Massachusetts after seeing the tips of the girl’s fingers sticking outside the vehicle’s window as it was going by him.   Tr. Worcester arrived shortly afterwards to assist with speaking to the mother. MASP arrived and transported the mother to the hospital for a mental health evaluation. The girl told Tr. MacKinnon that her mother said they were driving to Massachusetts, where the mother was going to kill her daughter, then herself. 

The special award of commendation was awarded to Tr. Worcester and Tr. McKinnon as it is believed that the vigilant actions of Tr. Worcester and Tr. MacKinnon likely saved the girls life and provided the mother the help she needed.

 

TPR William Baker – Troop G – in October 2021, Tr. Baker was dispatched to a call on the Maine Turnpike for an ambulance that was stopped on the side of the road with a patient that was going into cardiac arrest.  Tr. Baker responded and upon arrival he assisted the ambulance personnel but conducting chest compressions for approximately 15 minutes.  When additional medical personnel  were unable to get there quickly, Tr. Baker volunteered to drive the ambulance the rest of the way to Maine Medical Center, enabling the ambulance personnel to work on the patient.  Within a few minutes, additional rescue personal met them and Tr. Baker stopped the ambulance and got in the back to resume CPR for another 20 minutes until they could travel again to get the patient to the hospital.

Tr. Baker’s  quick actions played a significant role in ensuring the patients survival, Tr. Baker also received recognition from Maine Medical Center Division EMS Services  for his role in the life saving efforts.  

 

TPR Tyler Harrington – Troop D  – In September, 2021 Tr. Harrington responded to West Gardiner to assist Gardiner Rescue with a reported unresponsive 1 year old child who was not conscious or breathing. Upon arrival at the home, Tr. Harrington immediately began chest compressions with rescue personnel.  Tr. Harrington stayed in the back of the ambulance, continuing CPR efforts while the child was transported to Maine General Medical Center for further care.  

Tr. Harrington’s actions clearly played a significant role in ultimately saving the child’s life.  

Wounds Received

TPR Bernard Campbell Troop K – In August 2021, Tr. Campbell was working his regularly assigned evening shift for Troop K. During his shift, Tr. Campbell tried to contact an area resident who had outstanding warrants but wasn’t able to make contact. Before he finished his shift, Tr. Campbell stopped to fuel his cruiser on Main Street in Winthrop. A vehicle with the wanted subject pulled up to the pump next to him. When Tr. Campbell contacted him, the suspect fled on foot and Tr. Campbell gave chase. Both men fell down an embankment, and Tr. Campbell landed on a stump injuring his shoulder. The suspect fled again and despite his injuries, Tr. Campbell again pursued him, caught up and took the suspect into custody. Tr. Campbell escorted the arrestee from the woods where he turned him over to local law enforcement. 

Tr. Campbell was seen by ambulance personnel at the scene but drove himself to Maine General Medical Center in Augusta where he was treated for a dislocated shoulder and a clavicle which was broken in multiple places and required reconstructive surgery to repair the injury. 

Tr. Campbell returned to light duty less than a month later and full duty approximately 2 months following the incident. 

Colonel’s Award

NHSP line of duty death

2021 was a deadly year for law enforcement officers engaged in roadside activities nationwide.  Duties that require close contact in high-speed traffic with today’s highly distracted motorists present an ever-present danger to law enforcement officers.  Maine and New England were not exempt from this trend.  In 2021, Hancock County Sheriff’s Deputy Luke Gross was struck and killed while investigating a crash.  New Hampshire State Police Staff Sergeant Jessee Sherrill was struck and killed while providing traffic calming at a construction project.

Tr. Pat Pescitelli  Troop G – Tr. Pescitelli was assigned as the primary investigator in the crash resulting in the line of duty death of NHSP Staff Sergeant Sherill.  Tr. Pescitelli took on this role so that Staff Sergeant’s colleagues would not have to deal with the pain and tragic consequences of the crash of their brother Trooper.  Tr. Pescitelli continues to work on the investigation to this day, balancing his regular case load and shifts with this complex investigation  as the case is reviewed for possible criminal prosecution.  His work on the case commonly takes Tr. Pescitelli from Maine to New Hampshire in conducting his follow ups and interviews.  

Detectives Herb Leighton and Larry Rose – attended the autopsy of the NH SP staff sergeant to prevent the trauma of exposure to NH SP troopers 

CVEU – Members of our Commercial Vehicle Unit (Troop K) provided investigative assistance at the scene and aftermath of the crash involving Staff Sergeant Sherrill as the crash involved a tractor trailer.  

  • Sgt. Jeff Mills
  • Cpl Chris Rogers
  • Tr. Jack Dow
  • Tr. Rob Flynn
  • Tr. Jeff DeGroot
  • Insp. Dan Russell

Crash Recon Unit
 

Members of the Maine State Police Crash Reconstruction Unit provided services to both scenes.  A line of duty death scene can have a significant emotional impact on first responders.  Normal duties take on extra importance when we are caring for and documenting the facts related to a fallen officer.  When the potential for criminal charges exists, the level of attention and diligence is taken even higher.  The Recon Unit provided in-depth mapping, drone services, data down-loads and examination of vehicles and the scene.

Their recognition of the special circumstances, and display of compassion to the fallen officer’s co-workers and families deserves formal recognition.

  • Sgt. Darren Foster
  • Spc. Mike Pion
  • Spc. Pat Munzing

Fallen State Trooper Signs
 

During the First Regular Session of the 130th Maine Legislature, the Maine Retired Troopers Organization, led by retired detective Timothy Culbert, drafted legislation which was then sponsored by Maine Senator William Diamond, LD 537 “An Act To Dedicate Sections of Maine’s Interstate Highway System to Fallen State Troopers.”  

Through months of work of many co-sponsors, retired members and through consultation with subject matter experts, a committee was able to eventually make changes to the proposed legislation that resulted in it being signed into law on June 14th, 2021.  

This work resulted in 12 sections of Maine state highways being dedicated in memory of Maine’s Fallen Troopers.  Signs were created, erected and families of the fallen were able to attend roadside dedication ceremonies throughout the state.  

These signs will serve as a lasting reminder to the estimated 80 million vehicles that will pass these locations annually, of the ultimate sacrifice of our Fallen Troopers.               

  • ME Retired Trooper’s Organization
  • Det. Tim Culbert (retired) 
  • Sen. William Diamond
  • Sen. Paul Davis
  • Sen. Bradlee Farrin 
  • Rep. Bruce White
  • Rep. Richard Cebra 

 

TPR Timmy Saucier
Tr. Timmy Saucier Troop F
– In 2021 Troop F was hit with a significant number of catylatic converter thefts though the southern Aroostook and northern penobscot region.  Tr. Saucier volunteered to spearhead an investigation involving both Troop F and Troop E and taking the lead on putting together multiple theft and burglary cases in an attempt to identify those involved.  As the result of a lengthy and complex investigation spanning several months, Tr. Saucier was able to break up a sophisticated ring of thieves operating in the region that had stolen/sold over 1,000 convertors with $190,000 in stolen proceeds.  To replace these convertors would be over 2 million dollars.    As a result of Tr. Saucier’s investigation, in combination with the theft of catalytic convertors being such a problem throughout the state, changes to legislation were proposed in order to help combat the thefts.  
Tr. Saucier receives the Colonels Award for his tireless and dogged approach to breaking up this theft ring and making a significant impact on the theft and sale of stolen catalytic convertors in Maine.  
TPR Jason Wing and TPR Adam Fillebrown – Tr Jason Wing and Tr Adam Fillebrown Troop B – Joint award for work as Troop Investigators in Troop B 
Over the last year, Troopers Fillebrown and Wing have developed into a very dynamic duo. They have a clear reputation for tenacious work, a dedicated work ethic, and for putting together high-quality cases for successful prosecutions. Whether it be as part of a Task force, working State Police cases, or assisting many Federal, State, County, and Municipal Law Enforcement partners, Troopers Fillebrown and Wing have become the “go to” Investigators in Western Maine. The work they put and the very high quality of service they provide the Maine State Police and our Law Enforcement partners deserves recognition. 

A snapshot of just some of the work they have done over the past year.

  • More than 32 felony level arrests.
  • Over 33 Misdemeanor arrests. 
  • 9 arrests of felons in possession of firearms
  • Recovered at least 8 stolen firearms
  • Recovered stolen cars, ATVs, snowmobiles, and trailers
  • 3 fugitive from Justice arrests. 
  • Investigated or assisted with no less than 9 fatal & non-fatal drug overdoses.
  • Seized no less than 885 grams of fentanyl 
  • Seized no less than 208 grams of crack
  • Seized no less than 740 grams of Methamphetamine
  • Seized no less than 77,000 in currency
  • Seized no less than 165 firearms
  • Assisted in a 5 State motor vehicle burglary ring
  • Assisted Mexico PD, Lisbon PD and Oxford S.O. with stabbings
  • Assisted the VCTF with several arrests
  • Assisted MDEA and FBI Safe Streets with dozens of search warrants and investigations.   
  • Assisted every New England State Police Agency including but not limited to assisting RI State Police with a search warrant in Manie related to an 8 million dollar fraud scheme.

Troopers Fillebrown and Wing are an asset to the Maine State Police. Their work, their dedication, their continual effort every day to make Maine a safer place to live, work and visit, is nothing short of amazing and well deserving of the Colonels Award. 

Steven Lemieux (civilian)

Steve joined the Maine State Police Pipe and Drum unit in 2019 as a civilian member and has become a vital member of the unit.   Steve is a professional, Grade 2 Highland Bagpiper who is known for his talent and instruction across the State of Maine and beyond.   Steve provides lessons on how to play and maintain the Highland bagpipes, from beginner to advanced levels and is also currently composing a Centennial March specific to Maine State Police events.  Historically, our Pipe and Drums unit has been all State Police but has evolved over time to include other Law enforcement agencies and in addition, some private sector personnel.  Civilians like Steve, with his knowledge of the equipment and willingness to help others and promote the unit, are vital to keeping our Pipe and Drums unit thriving and ever growing.  

Steve receives the Colonel Award for his dedication and professionalism in his work with the Pipe and Drums unit.  

 

Forest Service Air Unit – Forestry Air Ops – The Air Ops division of the Maine Forest Service is a vital partner to the Maine State Police and this award recognizes their professionalism and willingness to help us when needed.  In 2021 specifically to this award, the Air Ops division assisted Troop E with two significant motor vehicle pursuits.  In both instances, the arrival and involvement of the Forest Service helicopter turned the tide in our favor, assisting us with being the eye in the sky and observing the suspects movements and operation when we could not.  Even when Troopers lost sight of the vehicle in both pursuits the helicopter did not and was able to direct Troopers and other responding officers  to the suspect locations and provide real time updates to the ground units.  In both cases, the outcome would not have been as favorable and the air unit was instrumental in bringing the pursuits to a successful and safe outcome.    These examples just highlight two of the many incidents that the Maine Forest Service Air Ops have assisted us on throughout 2021 and previous years.  As I’ve said before, law enforcement is effective because of working relationships with our partner Agencies and the Maine Forest Service is no stranger to being one of our steadiest and active relationships.

 

Nominees for Trooper of the Year:

  • Troop A – TPR Kyle Wells
  • Troop B – TPR Nicholas Watson
  • Troop C – TPR Garret Booth
  • Troop D – TPR Tyler Harrington
  • Troop E – TPR Jordan Bragan
  • Troop F – TPR Ted Martin
  • Troop G – TPR Jarrett MacKinnon
  • Troop J – TPR Owen Reed
  • Troop K – TPR Mark Barney
  • MCU-S – DET Ethel Ross
  • MCU-C – DET Jason Andrews