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August 5, 2008 3:00 pm

Brandon Haught
Public Information Office

Passionate, hard-working employees from a wide range of positions within the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office earned the honor of being named Employees of the 2nd Quarter of 2008 Tuesday morning. An incredible diversity of job responsibilities was represented during the ceremony at the Deputy Stephen Saboda Training Center in Daytona Beach. Sheriff Ben Johnson presented awards to a court services deputy, a sex crimes investigator, an administrative assistant, a telecommunicator, and a Citizen Observer Program volunteer.

Deputy Mary Mott has a full plate of duties at the Volusia County Courthouse Annex in Daytona Beach. But one particular incident stuck out in the mind of a Sheriff’s Office victim advocate, prompting her to nominate Mott for Deputy of the Quarter. Mott was on hand during an injunction hearing involving an 18-year-old sexual battery victim who has the mental capacity of a 7-year-old. The woman was visibly distraught during the proceedings. Seeing this, Mott comforted her by giving her some teddy bears, which the woman loved, and providing her books. Even more importantly, Mott offered encouragement and a hug when it was all over.

“I truly feel she went above and beyond and helped the victim feel comfortable enough to testify against the suspect in the injunction hearing,” wrote victim advocate Kate Blanton in the nomination letter.

Many jobs in the Sheriff’s Office require an exceptionally disciplined approach in order to do a professional job while also keeping the negatives of the assignment from affecting the personal side of life. Investigator Lauralynn Mays is a sex crimes investigator who has to deal with sexual predators and offenders regularly on the Internet. Her job entails a virtual patrol of a variety of online sexual genres, some which may be considered distasteful. Mays has tackled this assignment, which is relatively new in the Sheriff’s Office, with dedication and professionalism, leading to positive law enforcement results. Her successful approach to this challenging job earned Mays the Investigator of the Quarter nod.

“Congratulations on a job well done, and a hard job at that,” said Sheriff Johnson.

Employee of the Quarter Loretta Voss is the Chief Deputy’s Administrative Assistant, but she is a treasured resource for deputies throughout the Sheriff’s Office, too. She coordinates all outside detail assignments, requiring a high degree of organizational skills and the ability to work under pressure. She is always pleasant to work with, notes Sgt. Paul Adkins, who nominated her for the award, even when the work requires some last minute schedule adjustments when a deputy is unable to cover an assigned detail.

Gina Evans earned Telecommunicator of the Quarter honors for handling two extremely critical and stressful calls recently. A June incident involved an Amber Alert about a man who was considered armed and dangerous and had threatened to kill his two children who were with him. Evans handled a flood of information and kept 25 units updated as the call unfolded over nearly half an hour. Evans remained calm and in control during the complicated event. A week later Evans had to once again assimilate massive amounts of information when a man committed a string of armed carjackings. She had to help coordinate five agencies, patch radio channels and make sure all units on scene were safe.

“This is an example of the professionalism in our Communications Center every day,” said Sheriff Johnson.

Henry Martin has been a volunteer for the Sheriff’s Office since 2002, accumulating 4,800 hours of service. He currently serves as the Citizen Observer Program photographer. This requires him to travel all over the county to photograph fellow COPs in action. His photos have captured COPs helping at car accidents, fires, downed power lines, parades and children fingerprinting programs. Martin uses his own vehicle and gas to respond to these calls, ensuring that the history of the Citizen Observer Program is well documented.

“You’re always there; you’re everywhere,” said Sheriff Johnson. “We appreciate all that you do."

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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