Sheriff Grady Judd is pleased to announce 33-year-old PCSO Deputy Sheriff Mike Braswell, an 11-year veteran of the agency, was named a National Association of Police Organizations' (NAPO) TOP COP (see below news release from NAPO for full details).
Deputy Braswell and Deputy Sheriff Paul Fairbanks were shot by convicted felon Matthew Tutt during the early morning hours of June 25, 2010. Thanks to his quick actions and his bullet-resistant vest, Deputy Braswell was able to survive the shooting and eliminate the threat presented by Tutt, saving not only lives of Deputy Fairbanks and his own, but ensuring that Tutt did not cause further harm to Polk County's citizens. For his heroism and bravery, he was chosen from hundreds of nominees for this prestigious award. The awards committee selects one law enforcement officer from each of the 50 states, and then further selects the top ten officers from that group as "TOP COPS". Not only was Deputy Braswell chosen as Florida's winner, he is also one of the top ten "TOP COPS" in the nation.
See below news release from NAPO and attached document listing the top ten TOP COPS winners:
NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF POLICE ORGANIZATIONS
HONORS AMERICA’S FINEST
18TH ANNUAL TOP COPS AWARDS®
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The National Association of Police Organizations (NAPO) is pleased to present its list of winners and honorable mentions for the Eighteenth Annual TOP COPS Awards®, announced NAPO President Thomas J. Nee and Executive Director William J. Johnson today.
Each year since 1994 NAPO has presented the TOP COPS Awards® Ceremony. The purpose of the TOP COPS Awards® is to educate the American public about our nation’s heroes and to pay tribute to law enforcement officers in federal, state, county, and local agencies from across the country for actions above and beyond the call of duty during the preceding year. Our TOP COPS® are nominated by fellow officers. An independent Awards Selection Committee compromised of national law enforcement representatives select, from hundreds of nominations, one TOP COP® case from each of the 50 States and U.S. territories. Officers from the top ten cases have been selected as the 2011 TOP COPS®. In each remaining state, one case has been selected for which the officer(s) will receive an Honorable Mention award. (Please see attached list of winners).
“The TOP COPS Awards® provide an opportunity for all of us to recognize some of the brave men and women in America’s law enforcement community who selflessly put their lives on the line day in and day out” said Johnson. “Law enforcement officers care deeply about citizens and communities they serve, and this honor is one way of letting them know their contributions are not taken for granted.”
The Eighteenth Annual TOP COPS Awards® ceremony was held at the Warner Theatre in Washington, D.C. at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, May 12, 2011.
The Master of Ceremony for the 2011 TOP COPS Awards® was John Walsh, host of FOX’s America’s Most Wanted. Many celebrities from NBC’s hit programs Law and Order, Law and Order: Special Victims Unit, and CBS’s NCIS, Cold Case and CSI: Miami as well as NFL Hall-of-Famer John Riggins, served as award presenters. In past years, civic leaders including the President and Vice President as well as the Attorney General of the United States have helped honor these brave men and women by attending and speaking at the ceremony.
All proceeds from the TOP COPS Awards® benefit the Police Research and Education Project (PREP), Napo’s 501(c)(3) sister organization which promotes the well-being of officers and their families and educates and informs the public about the role of law enforcement in a democratic society.
NAPO is a coalition of more than 1,000 police units and associations representing 241,000 rank and file law enforcement officers from across the United States. For more than thirty years, NAPO has been instrumental in the passage of many important laws protecting citizens and police officers.
Congratulations, Mike Braswell!