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Award Recipients: Sgt. DiMarzio, Officer Lipp, Officer Wilson, and Officer Rodriguez

On November 19, 2012 the Franklin Township Police received a 911 call from a residence advising of a distraught female threatening to kill herself.  The caller further advised that the female was holding several knives and threatened to kill anyone that tried to stop her. Franklin police arrived on location and immediately attempted to communicate with the distraught female.  She had locked herself in the residence and refused to let the officers in.  Within seconds of arriving on scene the officers Sgt DiMarizo, Officers Lipp, Wilson and Rodriguez quickly establish a line of communication, obtained essential equipment, and located an alternate route into the residence.  Sgt. DiMarzio deployed his officers efficiently and effectively. 

Officer Rodriguez began speaking to the female keeping her occupied.  Officer Wilson obtained a ballistics shield while Officer Lipp and Sgt. DiMarzio located a second entry point.  The second entrance was locked and had to be forced open.  Once inside, they confronted the female and attempted to communicate with her.  She was extremely distraught over a recent medical condition and refused to listen.  She continued to threaten the officers with a knife.  She then attempted to light a gas stove.  As the kitchen was filling with gas, she attempted to strike a lighter near the stove in order to cause an explosion.  Seeing an opportunity and realizing the extreme danger that was before them, the officers deployed pepper spray in an attempt to stop her and move her away from the stove.  This tactic worked and she moved away from the stove becoming increasingly angry. 

Now enraged, she began to swing the knives at the officers.  Officer Wilson, utilizing the ballistics shield forced her further away from the gas stove to a more secure location.  While they forced her back, Sgt. DiMarzio again deployed pepper spray.  This distracted her even further and forced her to use a bathroom sink in an attempt to flush her eyes with water.  As she focused her attention to flushing her eyes, Sgt. DiMarzio moved in and struck her wrist with his baton in an attempt to dislodge the knives, while Wilson supplied protection with the ballistics shield.  She continued to swing at the officers who were now confined to the small bathroom that she had moved into.  During the attack the ballistics shield was struck several times causing large gouges to its surface. 

At this point, Sgt. DiMarizo struck the female a second time in the wrist while officers continued to force her back with the ballistics shield.  This strike was effective and knives fell to the ground.  The officers were then able to safely secure the suspect and the weapon that she used.  In this encounter Franklin Township Police Officers, working as a team, brought a dangerous and possible deadly situation to an end without harm to themselves, or others.  The Officers knowing full well the dangers placed themselves in harms way in order to stop the perpetrator from harming herself and others.  The officers brought an extremely violent situation to a quick and safe end by utilizing non lethal methods of force.

Award Recipient: Officer Sullivan

On October 31st, 2012, two days after Super-storm Sandy struck, and while Montgomery Township was reeling from the storm effects, Montgomery Police along with fire and EMS were dispatched to a structure fire in the Pike Run development. 

Police Office Sullivan, a nine year veteran of the department assigned to Patrol Division, was the first emergency responder to arrive at the two-story garden style apartment complex.  Upon his arrival, tenants were shouting to alert Sullivan to an occupant that remained inside the fire unit.  Sullivan entered the unsecured apartment stairway leading to the 2nd floor unit that had filled with smoke as a fire burned in the kitchen area.  From the top of the stairs Sullivan shouted for the occupant calling him by name. 

The individual, who had sought refuge inside a rear closet near the kitchen shouted back, but refused Sullivan's instruction to evacuate.  Police Officer Sullivan chose to extract the tenant knowing he would have to venture further into the burning structure - unfamiliar with the layout and not exactly sure where the tenant was secreted.  He navigated through th dark smoke filled apartment that was cluttered with boxes and obstacles of household items.  Unknown to the Officer at the time, the tenant was being evicted and had started to pack his possessions that were now scattered about haphazardly.  To reach the occupant, he continued past the fire and with the assistance of the complex superintendent, physically grabbed the 60 year-old male who was non-compliant and combative.  Both men had to physically restrain and move the subject bringing him safely outside where Sullivan had to continue to prevent the individual from re-entering the burning apartment.

Approximately 50 residents were evacuated from the apartments in the fire building including 2 units that were deemed uninhabitable.  Police Officer Sullivan was transported by EMS to Somerset Medical Center for smoke inhalation where he was treated and released later that night.  The tenant was deemed emotionally disturbed.  He was transported to Somerset Medical Center for smoke inhalation and a psychological screening. The fire is believed to have started while the tenant was attempting to light several candles for the purpose of light since the power remained out from the storm.  Without regard for his own personal safety, Police Officer Sean Sullivan went above and beyond his duty to save another person from a burning structure.

Award Recipient: Trooper II S. Talty

On September 23, 2012 in the Township of Bridgewater, Somerset County, NJ, while off duty, Trooper II S. Talty along with the assistance of Bridgewater Police Officers provided successful life saving CPR to a local accident victim.

Trooper Talty was alerted by his neighbor to a motor vehicle accident which occurred directly in front of his residence.  Trooper Talty quickly and decisively assessed the situation.  It was determined that the victim was unresponsive and did not exhibit a pulse.  Trooper Talty began to remove the victim when Bridgewater Police Officer Albanese arrived on scene and assisted.  CPR was administered immediately and continued until the arrival of another Bridgewater Police Officer at which time an AED became available and was utilized. 

Bradley Gardens Rescue and Somerset Medical Center Paramedics arrived on scene at which time began to attend to the victim and transport him to Somerset Medical Center. 

Trooper Talty contacted the victims ex-wife on September 25, 2012.  He was informed by her that the victim had suffered a massive heart attack and was recovering.  The victim would eventually be transported to Robert Wood Johnson Medical Center where he would undergo triple bypass surgery.  It is clearly evident that had it not been for the immediate actions of Trooper Talty that the victim would most likely have expired due to the seriousness of his heart attack.

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