UP officers to receive Professional Service Award from SUNY Police Chiefs Association

Roger Coda
Police offers next to cruiser

Set to receive the SUNY Police Chiefs Association’s Professional Service Award for exemplary service at Fredonia are (from left): Lieutenants Scott Martin and Brian Studley, Police Officer 1 James Huels and Lieutenant Benjamin Miller.

Four members of the University Police Department will join a highly selective unit of SUNY law enforcement officers when they receive Professional Service Awards from the SUNY Police Chiefs Association.

Fredonia’s recipients are three lieutenants – Scott Martin, Benjamin Miller and Brian Studley – and Police Officer 1 James Huels.

“I’m really proud of these guys. This is a system-wide award encompassing all SUNY police departments, so having this disproportionately large number of Fredonia officers selected for this award from over 600 police officers across the state speaks volumes of the professionals we have here at Fredonia,” said Chief of Police Brent Isaacson.

Only about 30 Professional Service Awards, which recognizes those whose actions greatly enhance the operation of their respective police departments, will be presented at the association’s conference on Nov. 12 in Saratoga Springs. Chief Isaacson nominated the four for the award, which for 2019 covers the timeframe between July 1, 2018 and July 1, 2019.

According to Isaacson, Lts. Studley and Miller were largely responsible for the police department being reaccredited in 2019 by the New York State Law Enforcement Agency Council.

“The reaccreditation is an enormous task where the state comes in to inspect us every five years, and they look at every single facet of our operation; all policies, procedures, operations and training are expected to be scrupulously documented,” Isaacson explained. “Those two lieutenants really spearheaded that effort; they were instrumental and made sure everything we do is by the book, and the book is very thick.”

As department leaders in the multi-year reaccreditation process, Miller and Studley ensured that Fredonia’s UP operations, training, reaccreditation files, general orders and policies and procedures met the high standards necessary for the department to be reaccredited.

According to Isaacson, Lt. Martin and Officer 1 Huels were instrumental in the proper functioning of the department’s evidence room, a repository of all physical evidence of every crime or investigation that the department handles. Physical evidence can include fingerprints, documents and drugs, among other items.

“The state mandates that physical evidence be kept in a highly secured, highly accountable tracking system, so at a moment’s notice we can pick out a particular piece of evidence related to a particular event,” Isaacson explained.

“Both officers made sure everything in the evidence room was perfectly packaged, secured, identified and ready for use in court, and that was recognized by the reviewers,” Isaacson noted. “In fact, they were using a filing system that is novel to the point where it was seen as a ‘best practice’ that’s now being used in other UP departments around the state,” he added.

Isaacson said all four Fredonia nominees conducted themselves with the highest degree of professionalism and their actions are representative of the professionalism of the New York State University Police and worthy of the SUNY Police Chiefs Association’s Professional Service Award.

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