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Press Release

U.S. Attorney's Office Honors More Than 100 Officers and Agents for Outstanding Work in Law Enforcement

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Columbia
Honorees Represent 17 Agencies, Worked on Dozens of Cases

            WASHINGTON - The U.S. Attorney’s Office today honored more than 100 law enforcement officers, agents, and investigators for their outstanding work on dozens of cases that led to the convictions of murderers, sexual predators, fraudsters, and other criminals. The event took place at the Great Hall of the Robert F. Kennedy Department of Justice Building.


            U.S. Attorney Channing D. Phillips said the Office’s 35th Law Enforcement Awards Ceremony recognized the exceptional work performed by honorees on a wide variety of investigations, including those involving violent crimes, narcotics trafficking, fraud and public corruption, and national security matters. Their efforts led to convictions in 41 cases that had an impact locally, nationally, and internationally.


            “The citizens of the District of Columbia, and indeed, people throughout the world, depend upon the dedication shown each day by the thousands of law enforcement officers here in the nation’s capital who protect us from harm,” said U.S. Attorney Phillips. “Their commitment to public safety and the criminal justice system is a constant, extending 24 hours a day, and today we recognize their outstanding work.”


            The ceremony honored the achievements of people from 17 agencies, including the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD), the FBI, the U.S. Capitol Police, the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Office of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), the Metro Transit Police Department, and other partners. The Sex Offender Investigations Squad of the U.S. Marshals Service received special recognition for an array of work, including its efforts to locate and arrest offenders who fail to maintain their sex offender registration.


            Among cases highlighted today, the U.S. Attorney’s Office recognized the detective work performed by the Metropolitan Police Department that led to the first-degree murder conviction last year of Joe Anthony Barber for the 1984 slaying of a woman at her apartment in Southeast Washington. Barber was sentenced to 20 years to life in prison.


            Other MPD detectives and a Metro Transit Police officer were honored for work leading to the conviction last year of Demetrius Banks for a series of attacks in 2015 in which he assaulted five women at knifepoint who were walking home alone from Metro stations; he sexually assaulted two of the victims. Banks was sentenced in March 2017 to life in prison with no possibility of release, plus 82 years.


            In another case, the U.S. Attorney’s Office recognized MPD’s detective work that led to the conviction of Jared Kline, a former emergency room staff nurse who sexually abused three patients in separate incidents at area hospitals. Kline was found guilty by a jury last year and subsequently sentenced to 45 months in prison and must register for life as a sex offender.


            A team from the U.S. Capitol Police was recognized for the arrest and conviction of Larry Russell Dawson, a Tennessee man who was caught with a handgun while being screened at the United States Capitol Visitor Center. Dawson brandished the weapon during the March 28, 2016, confrontation with law enforcement, ignored orders to drop it, and was shot by police. Police recovered the gun, a Daisy spring-loaded BB gun. In color, shape, weight, and other outward appearances, the gun resembled a semi-automatic handgun. Dawson pled guilty to a federal offense and was sentenced in March 2017 to 11 months in prison.


            The U.S. Attorney’s Office also honored the U.S. Capitol Police the case of Douglas Hughes, a Florida man who flew a gyrocopter onto the West Front Lawn of the U.S. Capitol on April 15, 2015. He pled guilty to a federal offense and was sentenced to 120 days in jail.


            The ceremony also honored the investigators whose work led to the convictions of the owners of a home health care agency for a scheme in which they and others defrauded the District of Columbia Medicaid program of over $80 million. Florence Bikundi was sentenced last year to 10 years in prison. Her husband, Michael D. Bikundi, Sr., was sentenced to a seven-year prison term. The investigative team included the FBI’s Washington Field Office, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General (HHS-OIG), the U.S. Secret Service, and the Office of the Inspector General for the District of Columbia (D.C. OIG).


            The U.S. Marshals Service for the District of Columbia-Superior Court created the Sex Offender Investigations Squad in 2011. Today’s honorees included Deputy U.S. Marshals as well as investigators from the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives and the Inspector General’s Office of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. In just over six years, the squad has arrested hundreds of people for violating sex offender registration requirements and other offenses, as well as others accused of various violent offenses

Updated June 20, 2017

Violent Crime
Press Release Number: 17-129