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Friday, August 21, 2009

Department of Justice

United States Attorney James R. Dedrick Eastern District of Tennessee


PROJECT SAFE NEIGHBORHOODS AWARDS CEREMONY

[KNOXVILLE, Tenn]—Knoxville Police Department Investigators Jim Quick and Jeremy Maupin received PSN Officer of the Year Awards today at a ceremony held at the United States Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Tennessee.

Lamar Advertising also received a special award for its partnership with the U.S Attorney's Office in the Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) awareness campaign.

The award for Investigator Jim Quick stems from his extensive work in two areas impacting violent gun crime: gangs and serious repeat violent offenders. As one of the region's premier experts on gangs, Investigator Quick has been instrumental in conducting forty-hour law enforcement training seminars reaching hundreds of local, state, and federal law enforcement officers across the state. These seminars have addressed gang awareness, gang member identification, investigative methods and techniques, and prosecution strategies.

Similarly, Investigator Quick has worked significantly in the area of gathering and sharing law enforcement intelligence on violent repeat offenders. In this connection, among other things, Investigator Quick developed and implemented a secure data base accessible online to regional law enforcement officers for sharing information regarding criminal intelligence on serious offenders.

Investigator Jeremy Maupin received the award for his exceptional work in connection with the apprehension of a violent and dangerous drug trafficker, Terry Jones. Investigator Maupin developed information focusing on Jones while he and his partner, Bruce Conkey, were investigating narcotics trafficking. When Investigator Maupin came into contact with Jones, there were felony drug warrants outstanding on him in three different jurisdictions. When confronted Jones fled, and Investigator Maupin pursued and tackled him. A violent struggle ensued, but eventually Investigator Maupin and other officers were able to subdue Jones. A search incident to Jones’ arrest revealed approximately two kilograms of crack cocaine and cocaine hydrochloride (with a street value of over $200,000.00) and seven pounds of marijuana.

The investigation and quick actions by Investigator Maupin led to the conviction of Jones of three federal felony drug trafficking offenses and two federal felony firearms offenses. Jones was sentenced to a nonparolable life term of imprisonment with a seven year consecutive sentence.

Lamar Advertising was recognized for donating over $350,000 worth of advertising, in the form of static and digital billboards along the interstates and highways from Tri-Cities to Chattanooga, to promote the public awareness of PSN.

PSN is a comprehensive national strategy that creates local partnerships with law enforcement agencies to effectively enforce existing gun laws. It provides more options to prosecutors, allowing them to utilize local, state, and federal laws to ensure that criminals who commit gun crime face tough sentences. PSN gives each federal district the flexibility it needs to focus on individual challenges that a specific community faces.

Under PSN, the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Tennessee has implemented a gun violence reduction strategy based on five key elements: (1) Partnership with federal, state and local law enforcement agencies in the district to coordinate community programs and review and prepare gun cases for prosecution in the most appropriate forum; (2) Development of a strategic plan to prosecute violent gun offenders and intensify federal gun law enforcement using state-of-the-art technology and intelligence gathering techniques such as crime mapping, tracing of seized guns and ballistic technology to help connect bullets and casings to the guns that fired them; (3) Working with ATF, the National District Attorneys Association, and local law enforcement to conduct innovative regional cross-training involving prosecutors and agents participating in gun crime enforcement; (4) Working with local communities to increase awareness of PSN, promote community involvement and send a deterrent message; and (5) Measuring the impact that this renewed effort is having on reducing crime and the long-term effect that this program is having in the community.

Since the inception of the program in 2002, 1,176 defendants have been convicted in the Eastern District of Tennessee for federal firearms and related violations.

For further information regarding PSN, contact James R. Dedrick, United States Attorney, David Jennings, Assistant United States Attorney, or Sharry Dedman-Beard, Public Information Officer at 865545-4167.

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