At an award event held March 11, 2009, in Tallahassee, the State Law Enforcement Chief’s Association (SLECA) named Florida Highway Patrol Trooper Joshua Earrey Patrol Officer of the Year for his exemplary efforts of serving the public while on patrol.
In the past year, Trooper Earrey performed his duties in an exemplary manner and was instrumental in detecting and apprehending numerous suspects engaged in criminal activity throughout the state. As a member of the North Florida High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Task Force, Earrey seized 10.5 kilos of powder cocaine, 1.5 pounds of crack cocaine, 83.5 pounds of marijuana, 2.5 ounces of heroin, 250 grams of MDMA (methamphetamine), $277,454 in U.S. currency and 23 firearms. In addition, he made more than 1,200 traffic charges and 280 drug-related charges over the past year. While on patrol, Earrey was also involved in an incident in which he stopped an armed carjacking suspect. The suspect ran from the scene, and Earrey chased him on foot and apprehended him.
For his many accomplishments and for going above and beyond the call of duty on patrol, Trooper Earrey earned one of SLECA’s most prestigious awards. In attendance at the award ceremony were Lt. Governor Jeff Kottkamp, Attorney General Bill McCollum, and Deputy Chief Financial Officer Brian London who helped recognize the nominees, winners, and their families. Before selecting the honorees, SLECA members considered the accomplishments of sixteen nominees, representing thirteen state law enforcement agencies.
SLECA was formed to provide training and education opportunities so members can better manage state law enforcement agencies. The organization also fosters mutual understanding among different types of state law enforcement functions. It promotes professionalism, ethical conduct and competency in the field of law enforcement, and it provides outreach and public awareness on issues affecting state law enforcement agencies. SLECA provides a forum for these agencies to share information on the best practices that create more efficient and effective delivery of law enforcement services to the public.
During his speech, Lt. Governor KottKamp sang the praises of our state’s law enforcement officers, stating, "You're an inspiration to all of us; you are true public servants. And we are enormously proud of you. We ask you year after year to do more with less, and you do it. You're making sure we keep violent criminals off the streets and citizens safe in their homes, and you make sure of that every day."
Congratulations Trooper Joshua Earrey for this well-deserved honor.
FHP’s Trooper Richard Blanco also received a nomination for the SLECA award investigative division. Trooper Blanco has worked with the U.S. Secret Service and the State Attorney's office to on various identity theft and title fraud cases. The State Attorney’s Office called upon Blanco to speak to them about his work to combat economic crimes.