The Ukiah Police Department recently honored its officers for their work over the past year, including two who provided medical treatment to a man who collapsed in the parking lot of a grocery store.
According to the UPD, officers Alex Cowan and Patrick Infante responded to the parking lot of the Lucky supermarket in the 500 block of East Perkins Street on July 17, 2020, after hearing emergency medical responders being dispatched to report a broken down man. .
The two police officers arrived on the scene before any medical intervention and found a man lying on his back next to his
vehicle which they said “had a weak pulse, shallow breathing and was unresponsive.” They asked for an urgent response from the medical responders and began to treat him.
Officer Infante began CPR and Officer Cowan retrieved the automated external defibrillator (AED) from the patrol vehicle and determined that the patient’s heartbeat required the administration of an electric shock. While continuing treatment, officers learned that the man had been on the hot pavement, determined to be around 100 degrees, for an unknown period of time.
When medical responders arrived, the man was transferred to Adventist Health Ukiah Valley for further treatment, and upon checking his status, officers learned that the man had “multiple blockages in the major arteries.
leading to his heart, ”and he was then rushed to an out-of-county hospital for further treatment. “
The first medical responder at the scene, UKiah Valley Fire Authority Battalion Chief Justin Buckingham, later noted in praise that the man would most likely have died had it not been for the two officers’ rescue efforts. The UPD recently honored the two officers with its Life Saving Award.
The Department also honored Chase Rigby as Officer of the Year, awarded to the officer who “demonstrates the highest level of organizational values of the Department in the performance of their day-to-day duties.” The UPD notes that in 2020, “a difficult year for everyone in the department, when we all had to face a serious staff shortage, the Covid-19 pandemic and a public call for reform Police Officer Rigby stood out among his peers. not only as a proactive officer, but as an officer who continually strives to apprehend individuals who commit crimes.
The UPD describes Rigby as “removing six illegal guns from the streets” in the past year, and showing “a strong commitment to arresting those who use illegal drugs”. In addition, Rigby “has made five arrests in the past nine months for selling drugs … which resulted in the seizure of a pound and a half of methamphetamine, two ounces of heroin, eight grams of cocaine and 400 fentanyl tablets.
Further, the UPD described Rigby as being known as a “stolen vehicle hunter”, as taking over “the extra
Field Training Officer (FTO) and Range Commander responsibilities, and being assigned to Major Crime Task Force Mendocino (MMCTF) from July 2018 to March 2020.
“Although Agent Rigby’s performance as an MMCTF agent was exceptional, he had to return to patrol early due to understaffing,” noted the UPD. “Being taken off a special assignment prematurely could easily put off any officer, but Officer Rigby returned on patrol with a good attitude and immediately established himself as one of the most proactive officers in the department. Officer Rigby volunteered to use the skills he learned in the MMCTF to eradicate illegal marijuana grown within city limits.
Chris Pittman was also honored by the UPD as Dispatcher of the Year, who has been described as “willing to step in and help in every difficult situation.” Everyone who works with Chris greatly appreciates his upbeat and positive attitude in all aspects of the work, including his relationships with citizens, interns and colleagues. The UPD notes that Pittman received his award for “very intelligent and valuable acts of public safety and community service that demonstrate special initiative and persistence in 2020.”