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February 11, 2014 11:00 am

Brandon Haught
Public Information Office

Sheriff's Office Employees Of The Quarter Honored

A desire to adhere to the spirit of public service wherein standard work hours and basic job descriptions are merely the starting point rather than the ending point are what set apart the men and women who earned the honor of being named Volusia County Sheriff’s Office Employees of the 4th Quarter 2013 during a ceremony Tuesday. Every one of them go far above and beyond what their jobs are supposed to entail, including a patrol deputy whose 60 arrests helped resolve several property crimes, a respected auto theft investigator, and a warrants department supervisor. Also getting awards from Sheriff Ben Johnson at the Deputy Stephen Saboda Training Center in Daytona Beach were a telecommunicator, and a volunteer.

Vehicles, street signs, extension cords, brass plumbing and farm equipment are just a few example of property that thieves have recently stolen and then tried to sell. But Senior Deputy Morris Froscher, who patrols in the Sheriff’s Office’s DeLand area district, took on the challenge of solving these crimes affecting the citizens he serves. Oftentimes, he faced the challenges of cases lacking suspects, witnesses or evidence. There were even times when the victims weren’t known. That just made Froscher even more determined to thoroughly investigate every case. His hard work paid off, resulting in more than 60 arrests during the quarter. Additionally, he created a program that has built a strong relationship with secondhand metal dealers and helps identify suspicious customers who are potentially conducting illegal activity. Even more admirable is the empathy and compassion Froscher shows when working with victims of tragedy. When emotionally tough incidents were over, he has returned later to check on victims just to make sure they are OK.

“He displays the character and strengths of a true leader,” said his supervisor, Sgt. Todd Smith. “His actions and behavior throughout this quarter were both amazing and inspirational.”

Special events in Volusia County for motorcycle enthusiasts bring lots of bikes to the area, presenting a tempting environment for thieves. But auto theft investigator Joel Hernandez soured that temptation when he headed the Motorcycle Anti-Theft Task Force during Biketoberfest 2013. The investigator of the quarter invited bike theft experts from as far away as Connecticut to participate in the task force. Once assembled, he then deployed the task force members in teams to potential hot spots identified through intelligence analysis. His supervision had a direct impact on the reduction of motorcycle thefts, dropping from 12 during the previous event to just six this time. His experience, professionalism and superb attention to detail have earned him the respect of the whole Auto Theft Investigation community.

“He continually displays unusual thoroughness, excellence and initiative while carrying out his duties and responsibilities,” said his supervisor, Sgt. Vidal Mejias.

The Sheriff’s Office’s warrants section has the important task of verifying arrest warrants for all agencies in the county around the clock. Shift supervisor and employee of the quarter Kim Melvin successfully manages that responsibility while taking on the extra commitment of coordinator for Criminal Justice Information Systems compliance, which entails monitoring certification, assisting in audits and coordinating with other agencies. As if that wasn’t enough, Melvin spent six months creating a warrants manual that has increased the effectiveness of the warrants department and minimizes potential procedural errors.

“You see the men and women in green, but it also takes all the people behind the scenes to help make this agency run,” said Sheriff Johnson as he presented the award to Melvin.

Telecommunicator of the quarter Kim Barlow was recognized for her role in a traffic stop that grew into a complicated fleeing vehicle, pursuit, shots fired, and kidnapping incident. Barlow kept up with the constant flow of information coming in from several different sources. Her interaction with the other dispatchers around her was extremely professional and helped to ensure all agencies were being notified of updates in a timely manner. The incident was a multi-agency pursuit that finally ended in Brevard County. Despite the high stress, Barlow was a calm and clear voice the entire time.

Volunteer of the quarter Earl Bennett is a valuable member of the records section team. He has used his above average computer skills to develop a method to scan field interview cards and associated pictures into a system that can then be searched by deputies on patrol. This has prevented unnecessary duplication. Bennett is always looking for new tasks to help improve the effectiveness of the records section and he faces every new challenge with enthusiasm.

Volusia County Sheriff's Office

Administrative offices: West Volusia 386-736-5961 Daytona Beach 386-254-4689 New Smyrna Beach 386-423-3352

Non-emergency dispatch numbers: DeLand 386-943-8276 Daytona Beach 386-239-8276 New Smyrna Beach 386-409-8276 Osteen 407-323-0151

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