HYDE PARK – Several Hyde Park police officers and four police assistants were honored for their work on Saturday at a small gathering in Hyde Park. The awards ceremony was two years in the making, according to the PBA, and will become an annual event.
Police Chief Robert Benson and Detective Joshua Tucker, the PBA vice-president, presented honors to the officers who were joined by family, friends, and elected officials at the ceremony.
“We don’t do what we do every day to be recognized or even patted on the back for the job we do. We go to work every day and we do the job, and our department does it very well,” Benson remarked. In explaining the commendations, Benson said ,”We are recognizing the people that have gone above and beyond in the course of their work.
Town Supervisor Al Torreggiani joined with County Legislators Ben Geller and Will Truitt in congratulating the honorees and thanking them for their dedication to the residents of Hyde Park. Toreggiani told those in attendance that he is “One hundred percent in support of the town’s police department” and is working with involved parties to develop an equitable contract between the town and the PBA.
A June 2, 2020 protest in the City of Poughkeepsie drew several thousand people to the area of the Mid-Hudson Bridge. Police agencies from throughout the region assigned officers to assist the City of Poughkeepsie to keep the protesters and the city safe during the hours-long rally. Eleven officers and two police assistants received a Unit Citation Award and Commendation Bar for their efforts.
A group of officers and police assistants were recognized for their performance in maintaining public safety during a sizeable protest among two opposing groups in town on September 13, 2020. According to Tucker, the personnel assigned to the detail “maintained the highest level of professional standards” during the event. Fourteen officers and three police assistants received a Certificate of Commendation for their work.
A small group of officers and police assistants were honored for saving lives on four different occasions. The efforts of the police and the assistants are credited with performing vital first aid and communications that resulted in positive outcomes for the victims.
Hyde Park Police Department personnel that were recognized:
- Lieutenant Paul Caccia
- Sergeant Martin Monaco
- Sergeant Jason Ruscillo
- Sergeant Dean Robinson
- Detective Joshua Tucker
- Officer Bryan Sweeney
- Officer Brandon Ewing
- Officer Justin Felicello
- Officer Rafael Torres
- Officer Michael Stallone
- Officer Daniel Ferrara (since promoted to sergeant)
- Officer Joshua Kemlage
- Officer Jason Berkowitz
- Officer Michael Plass
- Officer Jackie Tucker
- Officer Allan Roberts
- Officer James Ashworth
- Police Assistant Jenn Lefeve
- Police Assistant Omar Vega
- Police Assistant Erin Litts
- Police Assistant Tracy Merritt