MANALAPAN – Patrolman Matthew Porricelli has been named the Officer of the Year for 2018 in the Manalapan Police Department.
Porricelli and other members of the police department were honored during the May 22 meeting of the Township Committee.
According to the police department, the Officer of the Year award is presented to the officer who best represents the department’s core values: honor, courage and respect. The department’s superior officers nominate candidates for the honor and Police Chief Michael Fountain selects the winner.
In a press release, police administrators said Porricelli “worked tirelessly throughout (2018) in his efforts to be a proactive, professional and dedicated Manalapan police officer. In addition to his daily duties, he works tirelessly in the area of narcotics interdiction and driving while intoxicated enforcement. Patrolman Porricelli is also a field training officer, a firearms instructor and he works with the youth of our community as a Police Explorer adviser.”
During the ceremony, Porricelli, who was hired in October 2014, also received the Drug Buster Award, given for excellence in narcotics enforcement and interdiction.
Police administrators said Porricelli received the award “for his outstanding proactive efforts in narcotics enforcement and interdiction during the course of 2018.”
The Life Saving Award was presented to:
• Detective Seth Kreizman, who received the award for his life-saving efforts on Aug. 3, 2018, after responding to a report of an unconscious individual who was not breathing. The person was subsequently revived by Kreizman and transported to a hospital.
• Patrolman Jeffrey Mattson, who received the award for his life-saving efforts on Feb. 15, 2018, when a patron in a restaurant in Asbury Park lost consciousness and fell to the floor. Mattson, who was off-duty, immediately responded to the individual and performed CPR until Asbury Park police officers and paramedics arrived at the scene. The individual was transported to a hospital and later regained consciousness.
The Exceptional Duty Award is presented “for a highly credible accomplishment bringing public acclaim to the employee, the department or the law enforcement profession as a result of training and devotion to duty or service to the public.”
Detective Sgt. Michael Hoppock received the Exceptional Duty Award “for his steadfast commitment and his diligence in his work on the Manalapan Police Department’s accreditation endeavor that began in 2015. In April 2018, the State Chiefs of Police Commission on Accreditation hearing ended with a unanimous decision to grant the department full accreditation honors. Sgt. Hoppock’s work and dedication to this three-year project made this possible.”
Patrolman Christopher Makwinski received the Exceptional Duty Award “for his dedication and efforts in identifying a vehicle involved in a shooting incident that occurred in Freehold Township on May 3, 2018.”
Patrolman Eric Voorand received the Exceptional Duty Award “for his response and actions during an incident with poise and professionalism. He provided needed medical care to a newborn child until first aid personnel and paramedics arrived on location and transported the baby and mother to a hospital.”
The Meritorious Service Award is presented “for an unusual accomplishment under adverse conditions, with some degree of hazard to life and limb to the nominee, or where death or injury to a third party is prevented.”
Patrolman Kyle Earley received the Meritorious Service Award “for his actions on May 11, 2018, during a working structure fire. Patrolman Earley located a resident in the apartment, escorted the resident to safety and then successfully evacuated the rest of the apartment building.”
Patrolman Adam Sosnowski received the Meritorious Service Award “for his actions in disarming an individual armed with a handgun during his response to a call for service on Aug. 28, 2018, with no injuries to himself or the suspect.”
Five-year honorable service awards were presented to Patrolman Christopher Makwinski and Patrolman Christopher Oleksy.
15-year honorable service awards were presented to Capt. Leonard Maltese, Detective Sgt. Michael Hoppock, Sgt. Kenneth Mikulik, Patrolman William Dutton, Patrolman Jeanie Letts and in the Records Department, Cheryl Langlais.
20-year honorable service awards were presented to Lt. Thomas Mantle, Sgt. Robert Kelly and Detective Seth Kreizman.
25-year honorable service awards were presented to Capt. Thomas Barstow (now retired) and in the Records Department, Randy Rittberg.
Two officers received the Educational Achievement Award: Bachelor’s Degree (Bachelor of Arts in Individualized Studies, Fairleigh Dickinson University), Patrolman Kyle Earley, Bachelor of Arts; and Master’s Degree (Master of Administrative Science, Fairleigh Dickinson University), Patrolman Matthew Meyler, Master’s Degree in Administrative Science.
Following the presentation of the awards, Mayor Susan Cohen said, “For the mayor and governing body, the safety of our residents is our No. 1 concern. We are so proud of our men and women who are part of the Manalapan Police Department.
“We are especially proud of those officers who received awards and go above and beyond their duty to protect. We are fortunate to have Manalapan’s Finest led by Police Chief Michael Fountain and Capt. Edward Niesz,” she said.
In addition to the departmental awards that were presented, the following officers received awards:
• The 200 Club of Monmouth County awarded Patrolman Adam Sosnowski the Valor Award. The award is presented to first responders in recognition of exceptional bravery, often when they put their own life at risk to save and protect others.
• The 200 Club of Monmouth County awarded Patrolman Christopher Makwinski a Commendation Award.
• The New Jersey Narcotics Enforcement Officers Association awarded Patrolman Philip Accatatta the Individual Guns, Gangs and Narcotics Law Enforcement Award.