BRADENTON -- Officer Andres Perez has been named the Bradenton Police Department’s Officer of the Year. Perez, who's been with the department since 2010, was credited with saving the life of a 15-year-old girl who had tried to take her own life. The BPD has also nominated him for the Florida 16th District Congressional Law Enforcement Award.
In July, Officer Perez was dispatched to a home where a young girl was threatening suicide with a knife. The girl had locked herself in a bedroom. Realizing the urgency of the situation, he forced open the door and found the girl had hanged herself in the closet. She also had self-inflicted cuts on her wrist. Officer Perez quickly got her down and performed First Aid until medical technicians arrived.
“Officer Perez’s swift actions demonstrated his willingness to take charge of a grave situation and function effectively under pressure, which caused the juvenile to survive,” Police Chief Michael Radzilowski said in a release. “His actions are within the highest tradition and professional standards of the Bradenton Police Department.”
In other BPD news:
Sgt. Phil Waller was promoted to the rank of sergeant on January 30. Waller was promoted following the retirement of Sgt. Charles McCrea, who had worked for the Bradenton Police Department for 22 years.