Cheyenne PD Names Koeppel Officer of the Year, 60+ Others Awarded
More than 60 Cheyenne police employees were recognized for their achievements during the department's annual awards ceremony Wednesday.
Awards were presented in 15 categories, including Officer of the Year, Specialty Officer of the Year, Civilian of the Year, Volunteer of the Year, Chief's Award, Medal of Valor, Meritorious Service Award, Lifesaving Award, Unit Citation, Commendation Awards, Longevity Awards, Top Shot Instructor, Top Shot, Marksmanship Awards, and Physical Fitness Awards.
"It is always gratifying when we can get together and celebrate our successes," Chief Mark Francisco said in a news release.
"There’s been a lot of great work accomplished in this past year, and I would be remiss if I didn’t point out that these awards only recognize a small portion of those achievements," Francisco added. "We are very proud of this department."
Officer of the Year – Officer Lisa Koeppel
The Officer of the Year award was presented to Officer Lisa Koeppel. During her 18-year career, she has regularly performed above and beyond what is expected. In addition to her responsibilities as a patrol officer, Officer Koeppel has also served as a K9 handler for the past 12 years. In this role, her extra efforts resulted in the seizure of 1,280 pounds of illegal and dangerous narcotics.
Specialty Officer of the Year – Detective C. Sanne
Detective C. Sanne was recognized as Specialty Officer of the Year for his exceptional work as an investigator. This year, he led the department’s Community Action Team and Drug Enforcement Administration Task Force in productivity. He initiated a large-scale investigation into a drug trafficking organization operating between Colorado, Cheyenne, Casper, Gillette, and Riverton that was responsible for distributing large quantities of methamphetamine, heroin, and fentanyl. His work ultimately led to a 15-year federal prison sentence for the organization’s primary target.
Civilian of the Year – CSO Chris McLean
The Civilian of the Year Award was presented to Community Service Officer (CSO) Chris McLean for his work ethic and care for the community. He was selected as the CSO squad leader, in recognition of his natural leadership ability, and has successfully worked to re-shape the program.
Volunteer of the Year – Charles Cruff
Charles Cruff was recognized as the Volunteer of the Year. He has been a part of the Citizens on Patrol (COP) program since mid-2019 after completing the Citizens on Patrol Academy in 2018. In 2021, he volunteered over 1000 hours, working as a lobby ambassador, completing VIN inspections, and assisting the Records Department.
Chief’s Award – Detective Mike Fernandez
The Chief’s Award was presented to Detective Mike Fernandez who consistently demonstrated attention to detail and thoroughness in his investigations, which included several child sex assaults and a gang-related shooting of a juvenile male. He showcased excellent caseload management skills, without sacrificing the quality of his investigations.
Medal of Valor – Sergeant Jake Reiber, Officer Ben Lewis
Sergeant Jake Reiber and Officer Ben Lewis each received a Medal of Valor for placing themselves at imminent risk of serious bodily injury. Both officers were recognized for their work during a hostage situation where an unrelated fire was ignited in a nearby motel room. The officers were on the perimeter of the incident and heard a man call for help. Without hesitation, they ran into the burning room and rescued the man.
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Meritorious Service Award – Detective Baca, Officer Mims, Officer Ehlman
Twelve officers and one Laramie County Sheriff’s Deputy were presented with Lifesaving Awards for heroic actions that resulted in saving a human life.
Lifesaving Award – Officer Chapin, Officer Federer, Officer Mayfield, Sergeant Reiber, Officer Hayden, Officer Muzquiz, Officer Sekerka, Officer Glasby, LCSO Deputy Onisto, Officer Perea, Officer Vapenik, Officer Wiltjer, Officer Andren
Unit Citations were given to eight teams that demonstrated excellence during complex incidents.
Unit Citation - Officer Davis, Detective Walker, Officer Monnett, Officer Cover
Unit Citation - Officer Fitzgerald, Officer Brown, Officer Wiltjer, Officer Webster, Officer Wallace, Officer Johnston, Officer Smith
Unit Citation - Officer Brown, Officer Maule, Officer Koeppel, Officer Huff, Sergeant Malatesta
Unit Citation - Officer McGraw, Officer Tompkins, Officer Freeman
Unit Citation - Sergeant Meyrick, Detective Sanne, Detective Rippy, Sergeant Reiber, Detective Marino, LCSO Detective Ryan Wyskochil, Sergeant Norris, and Officer Koeppel
Unit Citation - Sergeant Malatesta, Sergeant Reiber, Officer Peden, Officer Wellman, Officer Inman, Officer S. Johnson, Officer Lewis, Officer Wallace, Officer Davis, Officer Ryan, Officer Brown, Officer Chapin, Officer Tompkins, Officer Taraski, Officer Huff, Officer Federer, Officer Warren, Officer Freeman, Detective Fernandez, Detective Pendleton, Detective Michael, Detective Bacca, Detective Walker, Detective Fahling
Unit Citation – Property and Evidence Division: Jennell Webster, Tressa Wellman, Conner Collins
Unit Citation - Officer Fitzgerald, Officer Wallace, Officer Warren, Officer Muzquiz, Officer Miles, Sergeant Johnson
Commendation Awards – Sergeant Gay, Officer Chapin, Officer Ferguson, Officer Hedum, Bill Hickman, Detective King, Officer Lewis, Officer Lohnes, Detective Marino, Officer S. Smith, Officer Warren
Longevity Awards – Detective Fahling (15 years/SWAT), LCSO Sergeant Rose (5 years/SWAT), Officer Koeppel (10+ years/ K9), Officer Glasby (5 years/Field Training Officer), Lynette Edner (15 years/Citizens on Patrol), Mark McKay (5 years/Citizens on Patrol), Marie McKay (5 years/Citizens on Patrol)
Top Shot Instructor – Officer Young
Top Shot – Officer Horne
Marksmanship Awards - Detective King, Officer Remers, Detective Rippy, Officer Ryan
Physical fitness awards were given to eight members who scored above 85% on PT tests.
Physical Fitness Awards - Detective Fahling, Detective Fernandez, Officer Horne, Officer Lohnes, Detective Morgan, Detective Pendleton, Officer Perea, Officer VanSwearingen
"What our employees have accomplished means so much more than what we can convey in a simple plaque or certificate," said Francisco. "It is important for us to acknowledge the selfless work they do each and every day."