February 8, 2002

Police honor citizens, their own

Singh captures Pacheco in library to earn award; Roth named Officer of Year



Shown on duty at Shields Library, security guard Raj Singh last fall made a citizen’s arrest at the library, helping to put behind bars a sex offender who had been evading police for several years.
Tony Novelozo/Axiom

By Ellen Chrismer

Shields Library security guard Raj Singh recently did what no UC Davis Police Department officer or anyone else on campus has been able to do.

He nabbed Gilbert Pacheco, a longtime menace to campus officers and patrons of UC Davis libraries. Pacheco has several times been suspected of exposing himself to women in the library but has always been able to flee before being caught.

However, last Nov. 10, after four years of trying to catch Pacheco himself, Singh got his man. For his efforts, Singh last week received a Citizen’s Appreciation award from the police department.

Singh was one of 11 UC Davis employees and local residents who were honored with appreciation awards during a ceremony at the Buehler Alumni and Visitors Center.

Several days before Singh captured Pacheco he had warned staff at the Physical Sciences Library that Pacheco had been seen in Shields recently and might soon visit the other library.

Then, while on his lunch break that Saturday, Singh got a call from Physical Sciences staff that Pacheco was in the library. Singh was on his way over.

He followed Pacheco from the Physical Sciences Library through the Chemistry Building and into Shields. When Pacheco sat down close to a female student and attempted to get her attention as he masturbated, Singh made his move and placed Pacheco under citizen’s arrest.

"I put my hand on his shoulder and asked him what he was doing," said Singh, who once worked security at Sacramento International Airport. "He didn’t even try to do anything."

Singh was nominated by police Lt. Joyce Souza, who said, that in his actions, Singh went beyond the typical duties of a security guard. Instead of calling police to make the arrest and taking the chance that Pacheco might escape, Souza said, "he showed commitment to confront the guy."

Last month, Pacheco was sentenced to three months in jail. He must register as a sex offender and receive counseling. He also has been barred from campus and other schools.

Other appreciation award winners:

Roger Adamson, Kevin Galart and Cutberto Santana

This trio of UC Davis Grounds employees came to the rescue of police Sgt. Nader Oweis only a few days before the annual police K-9 demonstration at Picnic Day.

He called on the crew for some last-minute work after learning that many of the bleachers typically used for the event were in disrepair, said police Capt. Rita Spaur, who spoke about each award winner.

"These three gentlemen worked long hours to prepare and erect enough bleachers that ultimately provided seating for 1,000 spectators," she said.

Lynn Madigan and Joni Alameda

UC Davis Medical Center nurses Madigan and Alameda were honored by officer Javier Barragan for their work tracking down an elderly stroke survivor suffering from short term memory loss who was lost in the hospital. Although the woman had been discharged from the hospital, she could not be found when her family arrived, Spaur said.

Madigan and Alameda found the woman in a medical center restroom and took her back to the emergency room for triage before finally releasing her.

"It is Lynn and Joni’s genuine care for their patients … that significantly shortened the search for this patient and decreased the probability that the patient would suffer any other injury or illness," Spaur said.

Jay Westbrook and Sacramento Harley Davidson staff

Westbrook and his staff were honored for their role in supplying the customized motorcycles for the police department’s first motorcycle patrol unit, which rolled out this fall. The unit meets a growing need as traffic on campus has increased, Spaur said.

Kimberly Barnett

After the terrorists attacks on Sept. 11 Barnett wanted to show that people even in the tiny Yolo County town of Robbins cared about New York’s lost firefighters and police officers.

The UC Davis Law School graduate and Robbins resident held fund-raisers and battled legal tie-ups to ensure that 11 eighth-graders from the town could travel to New York and deliver $12,000 in relief donations.

She also got UC Davis involved in her efforts, enlisting members of the UC Davis police and fire departments as chaperones for the trip. They brought with them $26,000 the campus had raised.

Steve Drown

Drown, the campus counsel, was recognized for his work in ensuring that the campus complied with the Clery Act, the U.S. Department of Education requirement of annually reporting campus crimes.

Drown helped handle complex legal questions regarding the suspicious death of student Andrew Weiman in his fraternity house, Spaur said. He also works with local courts to obtain restraining orders against persons who police believe threaten the safety of the campus.

Carl Foreman

Foreman, who serves as UC Davis’ environmental health and safety officer, put his knowledge to work for the campus good during last fall’s nationwide anthrax scare.

During tense times on campus, Foreman worked with the police and fire departments to develop a protocol for inspecting suspicious mail and packages.

Spaur recalled one Friday night when she called Foreman for advice. "His willingness to become personally involved to ensure the staff of the (police) department felt secure in their environment was beyond inspiring," Spaur said.

Maril Stratton

During a difficult year for the police department – the suspicious death of a student, a heated student government election, charges of underreporting government crime statistics and even discord among its own officers – Stratton, the assistant vice chancellor for public communications, worked long hours to help the police department effectively communicate the campus situation to the community, the public and the media, Spaur said.

Lisa Lapin

Lapin, the campus news service director, worked closely with Stratton on a number of communication issues. Lapin, however, was lauded especially for her work responding to allegations brought by the Sacramento Bee that UC Davis failed to report all the crime that occurred on campus.

With a campus team, Lapin spearheaded the drafting of a 10-page response to the newspaper calling for a retraction of the story. She called on her journalistic background as well as her understanding of university goals in that work, Spaur said.

"Lisa would have made a good detective," Spaur said. "She quickly understands what needs to be done in a given situation."

Jennifer Roth

Officer Jennifer Roth, who in her first year on the UC Davis force volunteered in community literacy programs and organized the campus "boot drive" benefiting police and firefighter victims of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, has been named Officer of the Year by the Police Department.

Roth received a plaque in recognition of her achievement at the department’s Citizens Appreciation Ceremony. "I should have received Rookie of the Year," joked the 2000 Sacra-mento Police Academy graduate.

Along with her community service efforts, Roth displayed a consistent overall job performance, said Police Chief Calvin Handy. Her work showed a balance of law enforcement and crime prevention, demonstrating to members of the public how they could keep their community safe.

The award could have gone to any of her colleagues on the police department, Roth said. She realized, however, her work stood out in one way.

After the terrorist attacks, Roth said, "I didn’t think of anything differently than anyone else, but I took action."

She credited police Det. Victoria Promessi in helping launch the boot drive with her.


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