Officer of the Year

Officer Jonathan Bennett and his police dog Judah.

Gaithersburg Police Officer Jonathan Bennett has been named the 2010 “Officer of the Year” for his outstanding commitment to duty, his professionalism and for his contributions to the city of Gaithersburg.

Bennett said he found out the news when Police Chief Mark Sroka sent out a note to the entire department earlier this month. This is the first time the city has recognized an officer of the year.

“I was excited,” Bennett said, when asked for his reaction.

In 2010, Bennett issued 609 traffic citations, 205 warnings and made 138 DUI arrests. In addition, he handled 675 total calls and made 33 criminal arrests and with 900 citizen contacts not one resulted in a citizen complaint.

“It is inspiring and reassuring to be witness to an individual who realizes the importance of that which is required of him and unselfishly devotes the energy and time above that which is expected in order to maintain the integrity and reputation of the Gaithersburg Police Department,” said Sroka.

Bennett has been with the department for five years and prior to that he worked as an officer with the WSSC Police, according to Police Spokesman Dan Lane.

In November, city officials announced that Bennett would become the city’s second canine handler. Bennett begins ten weeks of K-9 training school with his police dog, Judah, in March.