Published: June 29, 2017

The CU Boulder Police Department (CUPD) held its annual awards ceremony last week to recognize the outstanding work of employees and campus community members during the 2016-2017 school year.

CUPD medal of excellence“I am very proud of the work that was done by all of our award winners,” said Police Chief Ken Koch. “The recipients and our entire staff are dedicated to serving our community with collaboration, competence, integrity, passion and humility.”

The following awards were presented to department staff and the public.

Medal of Valor

Officer Clay Austin received the Medal of Valor award for his work to stop a threatening individual on Oct. 5, 2016. That morning, an active harmer entered the Champions Center and began threatening people with a machete. Austin and a Boulder police officer encountered the man, who refused to comply with their commands to drop the weapon. When the active harmer advanced on the officers, the two officers fatally shot the suspect and prevented harm to others.

Distinguished Star

Cpl. Ian Locko was the second officer to arrive at the Champions Center on Oct. 5, 2016. Locko partnered with a Boulder police officer to begin conducting a search for the suspect inside the building. Locko received the Distinguished Star due to his efforts that morning to keep the occupants of the building safe.

Police Citation for Excellence

Dispatcher Rebecca Cribelli was nominated for the Police Citation for Excellence due to her work during the Oct. 5, 2016, events. Cribelli was the only dispatcher on shift that morning and, while radio traffic and phone calls started to saturate the dispatch center, she remained calm, steady and accomplished her duties with distinction.

Director's Commendation

The Events and Emergency Management Division, made up of Director Stu Pike, Deon Pfenning, Sam Bogan, Sgt. Mike Lowry, Cpl. Shaun Sloan, Rocky Carbone, Brian Painter and Carissa Jaquish-Rocha, was nominated for its efforts during a speaking engagement in January by Milo Yiannopoulos. The team’s work and collaboration with partner agencies helped maintain a safe community for the university during such a large-scale event. The team also helped the University of Colorado’s Colorado Springs campus hold a safe event the next night. The team displayed exemplary teamwork, effectiveness and service.

The Investigations Team, made up of Sgt. Steve Cowles, Cpl. Ken Pacheco and John Kish, was nominated for their collaborative work with the Office of Institutional Equity and Compliance and the Office of Victim Assistance on the Campus Police Information Sharing Act (CISA) form, sex assault notifications and protocols. The team strengthened partnerships while educating university departments on law enforcement responsibilities while maintaining Title IX requirements.

University Police Citizen's Medal

Tracy Tripp received this award for her actions on Oct. 5, 2016. Tripp was the first person to encounter the active harmer in the stairwell of the Champions Center. Due to her actions, the active harmer was confined to the stairwell and law enforcement was notified. While encountering a situation outside of her normal work, she remembered the active harmer training she had recently received and acted accordingly to have the safest outcome for her fellow employees, students and members of the public that frequent the Champions Center.

Group Award

Frances Norton, Mary Vekasy, Katie Morgan, Natalie Heaston, Taylor Goldschmidt and Jessica Dinsmore—although not from the same work teams or even the same division—each realized the need for help in the dispatch center on Oct. 5, 2016. This group, with little to no training, jumped in and answered the multitude of phone calls coming from students, staff, faculty, parents, citizens and media.

Unsung Hero

Rocco “Rocky” Carbone was nominated for the Unsung Hero award due to his exemplary service to the Events and Emergency Management Division, the police department, the university and the Boulder community.