Meet the 2019 IACP/Motorola Solutions Trooper of the Year Finalists!
Meet the 2019 IACP/Motorola Solutions Trooper of the Year Finalists!
Each year IACP and Motorola Solutions recognize state troopers and provincial police who have demonstrated bravery, courage, leadership, and professionalism. At the annual Division Midyear meeting, the IACP and Motorola Solutions honor four regional finalists and announce the IACP/Motorola Solutions Trooper of the Year.
“Motorola Solutions is proud to partner with the International Association of Chiefs of Police to honor the selfless work being done in police agencies every day around the world,” said Jim Mears, senior vice president, North America Market, Motorola Solutions. “Men and women in state and provincial police agencies know the situations they face can change in an instant, yet they continue to put their lives on the line to help keep their communities safe. Motorola Solutions humbly recognizes the brave efforts of our four finalists and the sacrifices made by all law enforcement.”
There were many submissions detailing the courageous, dedicated acts of troopers in state and provincial agencies that exemplify what it means to serve and protect their communities. This year’s regional finalists are:
Utah Highway Patrol
IACP State and Provincial Police Mountain Pacific Region
On the morning of October 16, 2019, Trooper Ruben Correa was conducting a traffic stop when he heard of a vehicle that had left the interstate and became lodged on the railroad tracks – which are frequently used for passenger trains traveling upwards of 80 mph. Trooper Correa immediately left his traffic stop and traveled to the approximate location of the vehicle. He stopped his patrol car where the chain link fence was knocked over and observed the vehicle parked in a precarious position on the tracks. Trooper Correa ran over the downed fence and up the embankment towards the vehicle. Unbeknownst to him, as he initially approached, there was a train about a mile away heading in their direction. Trooper Correa made contact with the driver of the disabled vehicle, who remained unresponsive. Trooper Correa vigorously shook the driver in an attempt to wake them up and tried to unbuckle the seatbelt. As he was doing so, Trooper Correa noticed out of the corner of his eye the large headlight and could hear the train horn blaring as it rapidly approached their location. The driver of the vehicle had somewhat regained consciousness and became combative with Trooper Correa. His attempts to coax the driver out of the vehicle were unsuccessful. Trooper Correa bear-hugged and pulled the driver to safety just before the train struck the vehicle, crushing it. It was later determined that the driver had suffered a medical emergency while driving, causing his vehicle to become stuck on the railroad tracks.
Trooper Correa’s calm demeanor and immediate action enabled him to rescue a disoriented motorist from what would have been a fatal train collision. Watch the video.
Trooper Timothy Conklin
New York State Police
IACP State and Provincial Police North Atlantic Region
On January 28, 2019, Trooper Timothy Conklin learned of a stolen vehicle traveling in the area he was patrolling. He positioned his patrol vehicle in a U-turn on State Route 17 to watch for the suspect vehicle. Within minutes, Trooper Conklin saw a vehicle matching the description traveling westbound on State Route 17. Trooper Conklin pulled out behind the suspect vehicle, and the operator sped up and then crossed the median over to the eastbound lanes. Trooper Conklin traveled to the next U-turn and caught up with the suspect’s vehicle. While crossing the median, the vehicle suffered major damage and became disabled on the side of the roadway. As Trooper Conklin activated emergency lights and pulled behind the suspect’s vehicle, the operator immediately exited with an assault-style riffle and began firing at Trooper Conklin as he was seated in his patrol vehicle. The suspect continued to walk toward the patrol vehicle, firing at Trooper Conklin through the windshield of the patrol vehicle. Trooper Conklin positioned himself and immediately returned fire through the windshield of his patrol vehicle. During the exchange, the suspect’s rifle malfunctioned, giving Trooper Conklin time to reload his firearm. The suspect then made a flanking movement from the driver side of the patrol vehicle, firing a round into the ballistic panel of the door. Trooper Conklin was able to exit the vehicle and resume firing at the suspect. The suspect was fatally struck in his torso, ending the attack. The subsequent investigation revealed the suspect was the subject of several criminal investigations, was in violation of his probation, and was expecting to be incarcerated.
Trooper Conklin’s calm demeanor and decisive response to an imminent threat on his life saved him and prevented a violent suspect from harming others. Watch the video.
Trooper Kyle Seger
Illinois State Police
IACP State and Provincial Police North Central Region
On March 16, 2019 at 3:45 p.m., a suspect committed a robbery at the Sam’s Club in Glen Carbon, Illinois. After fleeing the scene, the suspect pulled a handgun and fired at a good Samaritan attempting to stop him. The suspect attempted to carjack someone in the parking lot of PetSmart, however was unsuccessful. The suspect then approached another vehicle on foot to attempt another carjacking. The suspect was successful in carjacking the second vehicle and fled from the scene. Trooper Kyle Seger was on his way to end his shift at 4:00 p.m. when he heard the emergency radio broadcast detailing the robbery and carjacking. Trooper Seger located the suspect on Interstate 55 North. The suspect then made a U-turn and began traveling against the flow of traffic. Trooper Seger continued to pursue the suspect through oncoming traffic. The suspect then exited the interstate, continuing the high-speed pursuit through Staunton, Illinois. The pursuit ended shortly thereafter when the suspect took the Interstate 55 South entrance ramp. He drove down into the wet median, where his vehicle became stuck in the mud. The suspect then exited the vehicle on foot, as did Trooper Seger, and a short foot-chase ensued. The suspect then turned and fired his handgun at Trooper Seger, striking the trooper in both hands. Trooper Seger returned fire and the suspect was killed in the exchange.
Trooper Seger utilized his training and put his own life at risk in order to protect the public from an extremely dangerous and potentially deadly individual. Watch the video.
Trooper Daniel Harrell
North Carolina State Highway Patrol
IACP State and Provincial Police Southern Region
On Monday January 14, 2019, at approximately 5:21 p.m., Trooper Daniel Harrell, a five-year veteran of the North Carolina State Highway Patrol, was patrolling his assigned area of Wilson County. As Trooper Harrell was finishing a traffic stop, he observed a vehicle traveling north bound on US301 improperly towing another vehicle. Trooper Harrell conducted a traffic stop, made contact with the driver and passenger, and informed the driver of the infraction. Both the driver and passenger were unable to produce their licenses or identification and drove off in an attempt to escape Trooper Harrell. A short chase ensued, then the driver pulled over. As Trooper Harrell was preparing to exit his patrol car, the driver leaned out of his vehicle and opened fire. The suspect fired approximately four shots, striking Trooper Harrell twice in the face. Trooper Harrell was able to immediately return fire and continued to stay engaged while providing vital information to the communications center. The suspect then drove away and Trooper Harrell continued to pursue the suspect. After a short chase, the suspect stopped to disconnect the towed vehicle. Trooper Harrell engaged the suspect with gunfire, however the suspect drove off again. The suspect then realized that they could not outrun Trooper Harrell. At this time, the suspect made a U-turn with the vehicle and collided head on with Trooper Harrell’s vehicle. The collision disabled Trooper Harrell’s patrol car. Despite this, Trooper Harrell continued to engage the suspect with gunfire again before the suspect was able to flee on foot. Thanks to the description Trooper Harrell provided, the involved suspects were located and arrested the night of the incident and no further persons were injured.
Despite overwhelming adversity, Trooper Harrell showed bravery and dedication to public safety. Watch the video.
"IACP is proud to honor those law enforcement officers who go above and beyond to serve their communities, putting their lives at risk each day,” said IACP President Steven R. Casstevens. “Congratulations to our finalists Trooper Conklin, Trooper Correa, Trooper Harrell, and Trooper Seger for their heroic actions and dedication to public safety. We appreciate the selfless courage, commitment, and professionalism displayed by all of the finalists. They are exceptional examples of the valor displayed by law enforcement officers across the globe. On behalf of the entire association, congratulations and thank you for your service."
IACP and Motorola Solutions look forward to honoring the finalists on March 25th from 6pm-9pm at the 2020 Division Midyear in Denver. To learn more about the 2020 Division Midyear visit our Division Midyear website.