Police Department’s OWI arrest leader in 2018 was Officer Aaron Miersma, who
was honored at the Porter County Substance Abuse Council’s recent annual
As Police Chief
Dave Cincoski noted at Thursday evening’s Police Commission meeting, Miersma
made a total of 16 arrests of intoxicated drivers during the Substance Abuse
Council’s fiscal year. “Considering that for three-quarters of the year
Officer Miersma was on day shift, that’s a pretty significant number.”
As it happens,
Miersma also led the CPD in OWI arrests in 2017, when he made 16 arrests as
well, and in 2016 Miersma led all county law enforcement officers with 38
Palleson made the second highest number of OWI arrests this year with nine,
And both Palleson
and Officer Alexias DeJesus were also presented with the Phoenix Award by
Porter County Coroner Chuck Harris, for using their department-issued Narcan
doses each to save the life of an opioid overdose victim.
“The Phoenix Award
is an award I wish they didn’t have to hand out,” Member Mike Orlich said.
But it’s a welcome resource for first-responders who, only a few years ago,
could do little at the scene of an overdose.
and your fellow officers are out there protecting people from themselves and
protecting the public,” Member Tim Scheerer added.
Christmas Eve Fun
In other business,
members voted unanimously to approve a parade application for the Christmas
Eve morning unofficial fun run being held to benefit the Westchester
Neighbors Food Pantry.
The run will be
held on the morning of Monday, Dec. 24, with the route wending its way
through the older sections of town along West Indiana Ave. and West Morgan
Ave. to South 15th Street.
No streets will be
closed and run organizers understand that the course will be open, Cincoski
noted. The CPD’s main role: providing officers to send the runners on their
way from the starting point, at Second Street and Broadway.
expressed their gratitude to the Duneland Exchange Club for its $500
donation to the CPD Gift Fund.
The money will be
used for the replacement and restocking of items in the go-bags issued to
all patrol officers. The go-bags are essentially emergency medical kits
containing a wide variety of first-aid and trauma supplies.
Members also voted
unanimously to authorize Cincoski to approach the Town Council with his
annual request for Cumulative Capital Development (CCD) moneys to make next
year’s fleet purchase.
Cincoski said that
he’s seeking to purchase three new vehicles--probably SUVs--to replace older
ones in the fleet.
CCD is a fund with
a dedicated property-tax rate used exclusively for the acquisition of
Member Pete Duda
took a moment at the end of the meeting to offer his best holiday wishes to
the Duneland community and also to urge folks to be vigilant during the
“Happy holidays to
everyone,” Duda said. “But shoppers and businesspeople should be attentive
and safe during the season.”
November in Review
In November the CPD
responded to 561 calls (580 in October), filed 57 cases (70), issued 42
citations and 17 warnings (48 and 31), and investigated 41 accidents and
nine (41 accidents and nine injuries).
Calls for service
in November included 92 suspicious persons or vehicles (95 in October), 13
thefts (13), 42 alarms (22), four incidents of vandalism (three), nine
animal complaints (six), 117 traffic stops (118), 12 well-being checks (13),
one burglary (zero), one report of child abuse (zero), 15 disturbances (29),
one report of forgery/counterfeit (one), eight reports of fraud (six), one
report of sexual assault (zero), and one runaway (zero).