UTICA – Two Utica police officers were honored Thursday, during the annual 'Police Officer of the Year' awards.
For nearly 50 years, the American Legion Post 229 in Utica holds a dinner, and ceremony, to recognize local police officers for their hard work and bravery.
Taking illegal guns off the street, and saving a shooting victim's life, are two actions that garnered the officers recognition.
Officer Aaron Llewellyn responded to a shots fired call when he spotted a man bleeding profusely from his leg. The officer applied first aid and a tourniquet that doctors later said saved the victim's life.
“Up to this point in my career it's got to be a pinnacle,” Llewellyn said. “Anything that's happened so far for me, it's amazing to get recognized. 160 other members of our department, just to say the thousands of calls that we take care of, something around 60,000. I would take a year that this is one of the recognized in this individual incident, seemed important enough to get this kind of award. It’s amazing.”
Investigator Aaron Donaldson helped to recover 99 guns and 92 firearm arrests, as a part of gun involved violence elimination program.
“It means a lot to me to be selected from the entire Utica police department,” Donaldson said. “There's a lot of well deserving officers, investigators in command, staff that deserve it as well. But it means a lot to be selected by this group of individuals.”
Both officers were also given proclamations from the city to recognize their work.