BPD shines spotlight on civilians, officers

Herald/Sonya Campbell - Jerry and Cheryl Grote, graduates of the Belton Police Department’s first Citizen Police Academy, received the BPD’s ‘Chief’s Award’ during the city council meeting Feb. 8.

By Sonya Campbell

Killeen Daily Herald

BELTON - Officer Raul Montes has been named the Belton Police Department's Officer of the Year for 2010.

The announcement was made during the city council meeting Feb. 8.

Montes was selected for the honor based on his "exemplary and consistently high performance level," Police Chief Gene Ellis said.

In 2010, Montes led the department in the number of calls for service answered, traffic contacts and reports written.

Ellis reported the officer's self-initiated activity was 20 percent higher than that of the next closest officer.

He also was commended for demonstrating leadership abilities when filling in as acting supervisor, earning the respect of his peers and for serving as team leader for the department's new Honor Guard.

Police Chiefs Award 2010

Jerry and Cheryl Grote, who graduated the Belton Police Department's first Citizens Police Academy, are the recipients of the Police Chief's Award for 2010, which recognizes individuals who have made substantial contributions in public safety.

The pair was described as having "a strong commitment to volunteering in law enforcement service."

Ellis described the Grotes was being instrumental in obtaining a mascot for the police department - Badge the Crime Dog.

"The unselfish commitment and time the Grotes have dedicated to the mascot program has improved the rapport the Belton Police Department has with the children of our community."

The Grotes also were commended for helping to keep the police staff motivated through their "tireless efforts to show support for them."

Officers of the Quarter

Police Commander Jen Wesley and Sgt. Larry Berg were named the department's Officers of the Quarter for the fourth quarter of 2010.

Ellis said they were recommended on their efforts as program managers for the Texas Police Chiefs Best Practices Recognition Program.

The police department began a process of accreditation by the program in May, which included policy development, self-evaluation, modifications to existing practices, submitting proof of compliance for the 163 standards and on-site inspection.

Wesley and Berg were credited with ensuring the police department met its goal of achieving "recognition" by the spring of 2011.

The assessors noted that when they made their on-site inspections, the department's evaluations were one of the "easiest" and "fastest" they have done due to the "superior attention to detail, organizational skills and an overall tireless level of commitment on the parts of Commander Wesley and St. Berg."

It was noted the BPD joined an elite number of law enforcement agencies in Texas that have been deemed "Recognized" through the Texas Police Chiefs Best Practices Recognition Program.

Contact Sonya Campbell at sonyas@kdhnews.com or (254) 501-7585.

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