May 21, 2015 at 1:18 p.m.

Police Commission gets to celebrate one of LAPD's own

Police Commission gets to celebrate one of LAPD's own
Police Commission gets to celebrate one of LAPD's own

Lakes Area Youth Service Bureau annually recognizes a law enforcement officer who breaks down barriers with youth and is a visible and accessible positive presence on the street. “Community policing”  is the industry term for a skill set that goes beyond reacting to criminal behavior after-the-fact, and promotes seeking out causes and making connections with the community.

The annual On Behalf of Youth James Trudeau officer award was created to honor former Washington County Sheriff and a Youth Service Bureau co-founder, Jim Trudeau, who died in 2013.  His wife Carol supports the program and attended the award presentation last week. The Youth Service Bureau Board of Directors chose Officer Cory Spencer as the 2014 winner and the police commission hosted the presentation May 13.

Spencer, originally from west Wisconsin,  came to Lakes Area P.D. as an intern in 2005.  He finished his schooling and was hired in 2007 and enthusiastically accepted the School Resource Officer position representing Lakes Area P.D. in Chisago Lakes District facilities, where he worked for five years.  Spencer said he fell in love with the work he did.  

He is taking a break from the schools at this time,  but stays in touch with issues and concerns surrounding youth offenders as the MN Juvenile Officers’ Association President.

He is also chair of Safety Camp;  a free community supported event held in summer at Ojiketa Regional Park in Chisago City, to instill everyday awareness of potentially hazardous situations and help youngsters develop skills.  

Washington County Sheriff’s Commander Brian Mueller said that if Sheriff Trudeau were at last week’s award presentation,  the sheriff would have been tucking a Washington County job application form into Spencer’s uniform pocket. Spencer is exactly the type of officer the Trudeau Award was designed to recognize, Mueller added.

Officer Spencer thanked his department co-workers and his chief, Kevin Stenson, who “showed me the way” when he first volunteered on the department 10 years ago. “Chief Stenson allows me to do the work,” in his own way and style, Spencer said.   “The honor goes to Chief Stenson as much as to me.”

MN Representative Bob Dettmer also presented a House Resolution voted on in committee, and engraved on a plaque recognizing Spencer.  

Lakes Area Youth Service Bureau main offices are in Dettmer’s hometown of Forest Lake and Washington County comprises a majority of his House district. Dettmer also represents the lower southeast quadrant of Chisago County.

In other business the Police Commission voted to proceed on a new impound lot.  The lot in Lindstrom is overcrowded and functions poorly as shared space with public works.

The planned new site is in Chisago City on land already owned by that city.  The commission voted 4-0 to authorize a not-to-exceed materials cost of $30,000 and labor and site prep is being provided by staff.

The commission members also heard that a conditional offer has been extended to hire a current Wyoming Police Officer, and the background checks and evaluations should be done soon.

Connor Quimby was approved to fill the vacant Community Services Officer, paid part time position.  Quimby moves up from reserves where he’s been volunteering.

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