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Eight Recognized with July Officer of the Month Honors 
Eight Knoxville Police Department officers have been honored as July Officer of the Month award recipients, the Department announced on Monday. 

The KPD typically recognizes those employees who are selected to receive awards during public news conferences. Unfortunately, due to months-long and ongoing COVID-19 restrictions regarding public gatherings and social distance requirements, the KPD was unable to safely host a news conference in the second half of 2020. In lieu of that, the final award and commendation recipients of 2020 will be announced in the coming days via news release and social media. 

For July 2020, eight officers were selected to receive Officer of the Month commendations. Those officers were Connor Cox, Chris Williams, Austin Jordan, Francisco Vargas, David Chandler, Jacob Wilson, Darrell Sexton and Brandon Lively.  

Darrell Sexton was selected to receive Officer of the Month commendations for his actions when responding to a reported suicidal individual on July 3, 2020. On that day at around 5:30 p.m., officers were dispatched to Fellowship Lane, where an armed individual was standing in the street. It was reported that the individual was actively firing rounds into the ground with the gun. 

Several officers, including Officer Sexton, responded to the scene, where they attempted to safely approach and make contact with the subject. The individual was extremely agitated and acting erratically while making suicidal threats. All responding officers attempted to calm the individual and de-escalate the situation, but the subject would only respond to Officer Sexton. 

At that point, Officer Sexton continued to speak with the subject, remaining calm and focused throughout a situation with extremely heightened tensions, while the additional units secured the scene. Following a lengthy and intense period of time, Officer Sexton was able to calm the subject down from an agitated and potentially violent state. Eventually, the subject put down the gun and was safely taken into custody. 

Officer Sexton was selected by the Awards and Commendations Committee to receive the July Officer of the Month commendation for his display of patience, compassion and professionalism during an intense incident involving an individual in the midst of a crisis. 

David Chandler and Austin Jordan were selected to receive Officer of the Month commendations for their work to quickly locate and apprehend two carjacking suspects just minutes after those suspects took a victim’s vehicle at gunpoint. 

On July 4 at around 2:20 p.m. a female victim reported that she was sitting in her vehicle in the parking lot of the Food City at 1950 Western Avenue when she was approached by two juvenile suspects. At some point during that encounter, one of the suspects wielded a gun while the second suspect started assaulting the victim. The suspects then removed the victim from her car and fled the scene. 

While Chandler and Jordan were preparing to begin their shift, they responded to the area of Western Heights to circulate the area in an attempt to locate the vehicle. Shortly after, Officers Chandler and Jordan located the vehicle, which fled from them. Officers pursued the vehicle until it wrecked near Baxter and Folsom. The two suspects fled on foot from the vehicle, but officers were able to apprehend both suspects after a short foot pursuit. The suspects were later positively identified by the victim. 

For their quick, decisive and proactive actions that ultimately led to the apprehension of two suspects who had committed a violent offense moments before, Officers Chandler and Jordan were selected to receive July Officer of the Month commendations. 

Connor Cox, Jacob Wilson, Francisco Vargas and Chris Williams were also selected as recipients of the July Officer of the Month commendation for their efforts when responding to a potentially dangerous and volatile situation involving threats of workplace violence. 

On July 12 at around 2 a.m., the Knoxville News Sentinel had requested a property check due to a former contract employee that had threatened the staff earlier in the evening. As officers were arriving on scene for that property check, News Sentinel staff called to report that the suspect was present in the parking lot. 

Officers located the suspect near the employee entrance as he was exiting his vehicle. The suspect was observed in possession of a firearm. Officers approached the suspect, who briefly drew his firearm at some point during the encounter, and took him into custody without incident. 

In addition to the firearm that was on the suspect’s person, two additional loaded firearms were also located in the suspect vehicle. Officers also located a machete that was used by the suspect to threaten Knox News staff members earlier in the day. 

The suspect, identified as 37-year-old Roger Reeves, was found to have an outstanding warrant for aggravated assault and had a prior felony conviction out of Kentucky. 

Officers Cox, Wilson, Vargas and Williams were selected to receive the Officer of the Month award for their quick response and exceptional actions, which possibly prevented a violent act. 

Brandon Lively was the final recipient of the July Officer of the Month commendation, receiving the award for his vigilance and keen observation that led to an arrest. 

On July 24 at around 3:15 a.m., Officer Lively was dispatched to a call in the area of Merchant Drive. While en route to that call, Lively observed a suspicious male inside of a vehicle at Transmission Corporation of America on Clinton Highway. When Lively approached the vehicle to investigate further, he saw that the vehicle was running without a key in the ignition. While Lively was on scene, the suspect spotted him and fled on foot into a wooded area behind Pizza Inn. Officer Lively and other responding officers then set up a perimeter, eventually located the suspect hiding in the wood line and took him into custody without further incident. 

Upon further investigation, the suspect was seen on video footage burglarizing several other vehicles in the parking lot. 

Officer Lively was recognized by the Awards and Commendations Committee for his diligence and proactive efforts, which likely prevented further property crimes. 
Posted by serland On 25 January, 2021 at 4:00 PM  

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