Peel Police Hand Out Awards to Brave Cops and Citizens

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James McCann was at Bramalea City Centre when he saw one man chasing another.

It turned out to be an off-duty Toronto police officer pursuing a man who had just robbed a jewelry store.

The officer, Sgt. Glenn Asselin, tried arresting the suspect but he turned violent.

That’s when McCann stepped in.

A handgun fell from the suspect’s waistband during the struggle, making the situation highly dangerous for everyone nearby.

Asselin and McCann eventually detained the suspect and the gun was seized.

"I really like to give out the citizens' awards," said Peel Regional Police Chief Jennifer Evans at the Mississauga Convention Centre on Thursday.

They're "the community members who see something and act immediately and then they jump in without fear."

McCann was among dozens of officers and citizens who were honoured by the Peel Police Services Board (PSB) for heroism on June 14.

Daniel Ferreira is another.

He was alerted by his neighbour last September when a domestic fight was taking place in her home.

Ferreira found the armed attacker on top of the victim with a knife.

He placed himself in grave danger to stop the attack, wrestling the knife away from the attacker.

The attacker continued the assault, forcing her elbow against the throat of the victim to stop her from breathing.

Ferreira intervened again and successfully pulled the attacker off of the victim, stopping several attacks until police arrived.

Award recipients are all people who help make the community safer, said PSB vice-chairperson Norma Nicholson who handed out awards with Evans.

Scott Riche is another example.

He was jogging in Mississauga’s Meadowvale neighbourhood in Dec. 2016 when he saw a woman enter Lake Aquitaine and fully submerge.

Riche jumped into the lake and swam to rescue her and assisted the woman until emergency crews arrived.

He later learned she had tried to take her own life.

Along with residents, outstanding work by the men and women in blue was also recognized.

Const. Clayton Asano was honoured -twice- for his incredible forensics work involving crime scene investigations.

He skillfully processed a scene for an attempted murder last year.

His expertise was critical in obtaining a positive identification due to a latent fingerprint examination and an advanced paint transfer examination.

Asano played an integral role in obtaining a DNA sample from a 2017 stabbing investigation which resulted in a positive match from the DNA bank.

He also played a key role in a Mississauga shooting investigation in July 2016.

The scene was highly complicated and Asano's interpretation of latent fingerprints, DNA and firearms ballistic evidence made it easy for investigators to understand.

A team of officers, led by acting Sgt. Paul Corcoran, comprehended what they were dealing with when they tackled a pair of gang-related shootings in Brampton in August 2017.

Constables Colin Blaney, Markus Cissek, Kristopher Dawe, Mark Finnie, Scott King, Matthew Mcaulay, Scott Smith, and Sean Weggenschimmel combined their skills and talents.

The results: Both shooters were charged along with 35 additional suspects, plus $55,000 in drugs and cash was seized. In addition, 10 warrants were executed and police took five guns off the street.

Back on the street, Sgt. John Rocha, Const. Morgan McDougal, Const. Matthew Pitula and cadet Daniel Sheikh were quick on their feet when they responded to a call for a Mississauga crash in March 2018.

They were sent to a single-vehicle crash in which a vehicle, travelling at a high rate of speed, navigated the curve of a road and hit a tree.

The officers arrived on scene finding the vehicle fully engulfed in flames.

A male driver was found in a semi-conscious state as flames consumed the interior of the car.

The airbags were deployed and the steering wheel was impacting the victim's leg but Sheikh forced the crushed driver's door open and they worked quickly to bring the male to safety.

Const. Stephen Sherwin received the Officer of the Year Award for his outstanding youth crime work in Brampton.

Media awards were also distributed, with InSauga.com’s senior editors Ashley Newport and Kelly Roche receiving honours for news and social media.

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