Officer Randy Thompson has been named the 2009 Kiwanis Club of Longboat Key Police Officer of the Year, making him only the third officer in department history to receive the honor for a second time.
In September, Thompson was on duty when he received a report of an automobile burglary at the Atlas Street beach access, just north of the Longboat Key Hilton Beachfront Resort. Thompson, who was on patrol at the North Shore Road beach access, had observed a vehicle matching the description driving slowly through the area heading north to Bradenton Beach. Thompson provided a detailed description of the suspect and vehicle over the Manatee County radio system. The suspect tried to evade apprehension, but was blocked in by police units and was physically removed from his vehicle.
Later, as Thompson processed the crime scenes and contents of the vehicle, he discovered that the suspect had been breaking into cars in multiple jurisdictions. As a result, the suspect was charged with three counts of car burglary. Thompson’s work also helped the Sarasota Sheriff’s Department to identify that the same suspect was using stolen credit cards at an ATM. According to Longboat Key Police Chief Al Hogle, Thompson most likely prevented other burglaries in the area.
Thompson, a 15-year veteran of the department, serves the Longboat Key Police Department as a senior field training officer and recently trained two new police officers in patrol tactics and zone coverage. He is also a tenured member of the Longboat Key Police Retirement Board of Trustees.
“He’s terrific as an officer,” Hogle said. “He’s always got a smile on his face and he’s very patient, not just with citizens, but also with our other officers.”
Occupation: Patrol officer
Family: Three children
Hometown: Syracuse, N.Y.
Interesting fact: Thompson is also a certified Emergency Medical Technician (EMT).
Contact Robin Hartill at email@example.com.
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