Chesterton Tribune



Chesterton officers Miersma, DeJesus and Palleson honored

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The Chesterton 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 banquet.

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 arrests.

Officer Erik Palleson made the second highest number of OWI arrests this year with nine, Cincoski added.

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.

“Thankfully, you and your fellow officers are out there protecting people from themselves and protecting the public,” Member Tim Scheerer added.

Christmas Eve Fun Run

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.

Duneland Exchange Donation

Meanwhile, members 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.

Fleet Order

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 emergency vehicles.

Last Thought

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 shopping season.

“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).



Posted 12/17/2018





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