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Duty Officer of the Quarter
July through September, 2008

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Duty Officer of the Quarter
Trooper Recognition

Duty Officer Mendella  and FWC Duty Officer Stephens
Duty Officer Leah Mendella and FWC Duty Officer Melissa Stephens
Troop K (Lake Worth)

Congratulations to Duty Officer Leah Mendella for being selected as the Florida Highway Patrol Duty Officer of the Quarter for July through September, 2008, for her role in assisting the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission with providing backup to one of their officers in Palm Beach County.

On August 24, 2008, FWC Lieutenant Atwell Pride attempted to call in a traffic stop to the Lake Worth Regional Communications Center at approximately 9:45 PM. Only portions of his radio transmissions could be heard which left his location unknown and any additional attempts to call him were going unanswered.

FWC Duty Officer Stephens and Duty Officer Mendella

Once aware of the incident, Duty Officer Mendella assisted the FWC Duty Officer, Melissa Stephens, by locating Lieutenant Pride on her CAD mapping system allowing Duty Officer Stephens to immediately dispatch various law enforcement units to his location for backup. Officers arriving on the scene found Lieutenant Pride with two combative subjects that he was trying to secure. One subject was subsequently arrested for DUI, and the other for resisting arrest. Without Duty Officer Mendella‘s immediate assistance to Lieutenant Pride, an already difficult situation may have been worse.

Officer Mendella has been commended by both FHP Colonel John Czernis and FWC Colonel Julie Jones for her actions during this incident. Also noted was how this incident reflects upon the working relationship that has been established with the Florida Highway Patrol’s counterparts within the Regional Communications Centers. Officer Mendella exemplifies the very best of what our duty officers are expected to handle at any given time.

Officer Mendella is commended for her prudent actions, and is congratulated for being selected as the Florida Highway Patrol Duty Officer of the Quarter for July through September, 2008.

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