David Wynn II named HPD Officer of the YearBy BUSTER WOLFE,
Hattiesburg Police Officer David Wynn II gave the credit for his involvement in solving several recent major crimes to the training he received at the Police Academy and on the job.
Last Friday, Wynn was selected as the 2017 Office of the Year during the Hattiesburg Police Department’s Award Day at the Hattiesburg Police & Fire Training Academy. Maj. Hardy Sims announced that Wynn had received the award.
“I am convinced that if we, as law enforcement officers, all try to be better than you ever thought you could be, not better than everybody else, our city would be better for it,” he said. “As I stand before you, I am honored to present to you the 2017 Officer of the Year. Most years, it is a secret who will receive this prestigious award, but I am sure all – if not all, most – know who this recipient is.”
Sims said Wynn stopped a vehicle for speeding in April 2017 after the Boost Mobile and 49 Discount had been robbed. Instead of just writing a ticket, he searched the vehicle and found unopened packs of cigarettes and unopened cell phones.
In July 2017 while he was off duty, Wynn noticed a suspicious car parked at gas station, with wires coming from the car. He had been warned about credit card skimmers in the area. Before officers could arrive on the scene, he followed the vehicle and led a marked vehicle to the suspect. One was wanted for several crimes in several states and the arrest stopped a major crime ring.
In September 2017, Wynn returned fire on a suspect and then was able to apprehend him before anyone could be hurt.
Wynn said he appreciated receiving the Officer of the Year Award.
“It says that the department recognizes what the officers are doing, working to serve their community,” he said. “That’s what we’re out here for. I’m out here protecting and serving the community, which has given so much to this department, to myself and to my family. They recognize the hard work.”
Wynn said his involvement in recognizing that a crime could be in progress goes directly back to how he was trained.
“I think that all comes back to the training and what was instilled in us at the Police Academy,” he said. “Being aware of our surroundings was kinda beat into us. Just being observant played a big role in those incidents.”
In a special service before the awards, Police Chief Anthony Parker presented the service weapons of slain officers Liquori Tate and Benjamin J. Deen, who were killed during a traffic stop May 9, 2015.
The Hattiesburg Police Department's Benevolent Association purchased the weapons after the Hattiesburg City Council approved the action Feb. 6.
Other awards that were presented at the event included:
• Citizen Service Citations: Nancy Fines and Ann Palermo.
• Special Recognition Award: Greg Bowman.
• Most Citations: Ray Walley (2,363).
• Most DUI arrests: Maxwell Gavin (15).
• Most Felony Arrests: Kyle Stuart (115).
• Most Misdemeanor Arrests: Megan Rue (92).
• Most Marijuana Seized: William Gordon (449.76 grams).
• Most Cocaine Seized: William Gordon (25 grams).
• Most Methamphetamine Seized: Kyle Stuart (151 grams).
• Most Money Seized: David Wynn II ($26,484).
• Best Work Attendance (Sworn Personnel): Destin Chandler.
• Best Work Attendance (Non-Sworn): Elece Boose, Allen Brewer, Cigi Brown, Ethel Brown, Ruby Cole, Jodie Hines, Bertha Jackson, Creola McCarty, Melisha Nunez, Dorothy Parks, Jacqulyne Strickland, Joseph Wiley and Glenda Wilson.
• Civilian Employee of the Year: Whitney Harper.
• Service Award: Patrina Harper Applewhite.
• Excellence Awards: Mattie Taylor (Crosby) and Sherial Robinson.