Chamber of Commerce to Recognize Heroic Sheriff's Deputies
On June 6, 2011, the Fairfax County Chamber of Commerce hosted its 33rd Annual Valor Awards at the Hilton McLean Tysons Corner. The Valor Awards recognize Fairfax County’s finest public safety and law enforcement personnel. Five Fairfax sheriff's deputies were among the heroes honored.
On May 8, 2010, PFC Mario Torres and his wife were on a Carnival cruise headed back to the Port of Baltimore from the Bahamas. On the way to the main dining area, PFC Torres observed a man with one leg over an interior deck railing and a knife pointed at his chest. The drop from the railing was nine stories down to the marble floor of the ship's main entrance.
Assessing the situation, PFC Torres identified himself to a crew member as an off-duty deputy sheriff from Fairfax County, Virginia, currently assigned to the Crisis Negotiation Team. Subsequently, the captain of the ship accepted PFC Torres offer of assistance to negotiate with the suicidal passenger. After three hours of negotiations with PFC Torres, the passenger finally moved away from the railing and shortly thereafter put down the knife.
During dinner that evening, the captain requested PFC Torres’ assistance again because the passenger, fearing his food might be poisoned, would not eat unless the food tray came from PFC Torres. PFC Torres immediately responded, and the passenger thanked him for saving his life. For his willingness to intervene in a sensitive situation, using top-notch negotiating skills to save a fellow cruise passenger's life, the Chamber of Commerce will present to PFC Mario Torres a Certificate of Valor.
On February 26, 2010, PFC Andrew Mollison and PFC Kevin Reilly drove away from the Fairfax County Criminal Justice Academy for a class lunch break and came upon an accident at the intersection of Stonecroft Boulevard and Westfield Boulevard in Chantilly. A small SUV and a sedan had collided, and the SUV had rolled over onto the driver’s side. The driver had been ejected from her side window and was pinned under the vehicle. She had a head injury and appeared unable to breathe with the vehicle on top of her.
The two deputies, with help from two passersby, lifted the vehicle off the driver and the secured it with a jack. The deputies stayed with the injured driver and waited for fire and rescue units to arrive and transport her to the hospital.
Because of their deliberate, unselfish lifesaving actions, the Chamber of Commerce will present to each of them a Certificate of Valor.
On June 14, 2010, a man was arrested and brought to the ADC on two charges of second degree murder. He was housed in a single cell and put on a suicide watch. During a cell check, the deputy in charge discovered that the inmate apparently had slammed his head against the cell wall several times, causing himself serious head wounds. He was laying on his back with blood covering his face, head, upper body and a large portion of the cell.
PFC Teena Putman, who is certified as a paramedic, arrived with the ADC nursing staff and took control of the situation, remaining calm and providing direction. She also assisted the nursing staff with obtaining vitals, applied an oxygen mask, and suggested and implemented actions to prevent shock. Although the inmate's condition appeared to be worsening, PFC Putman and the nursing staff were able to control the bleeding and place a cervical collar on him. Soon a rescue unit arrived and transported the inmate to a hospital. Without hesitation, PFC Putman took thoughtful and deliberate action, playing a vital role in saving the inmate's life.
For the leadership and clearheadedness she demonstrated in a matter of life and death, the Chamber of Commerce will present to PFC Teena Putman a Lifesaving Award.
On July 26, 2010, PFC Nadeem Mian was working in the Adult Detention Center in a direct supervision housing unit. During dinner, PFC Mian noticed an inmate take a sip of water and quickly go to his cell, looking distressed. The deputy followed the inmate and observed the inmate attempting, unsuccessfully, to force himself to vomit. The inmate was shaking and appeared to be having difficulty breathing.
PFC Mian radioed for help and quickly initiated the first aid techniques required for a choking victim. First, he stood behind the inmate and performed the Heimlich maneuver in an attempt to dislodge the object that had impaired his breathing. The Heimlich maneuver was not working; the inmate’s face and ears were turning purple. Then PFC Mian delivered several blows to the inmate's back, between the shoulder blades. Subsequently, the inmate started to cough, and the food blocking his airway became dislodged.
For his attentiveness and quick actions that prevented a serious complication or the loss of human life, the Chamber of Commerce will present to PFC Nadeem Mian a Lifesaving Award.