Upper Marlboro, MD… Prince George’s County Executive Rushern Baker III joined Sheriff Melvin C. High, Fire Chief Marc Bashoor, Police Chief Mark Magaw and Department of Corrections Director Mary Lou McDonough Wednesday at Martin’s Crosswinds in Greenbelt, MD, for the 36th Annual Public Safety Valor Awards.
Three Sheriff’s Deputies were honored with the Silver Medal of Valor for heroic efforts that helped save the lives of a Capitol Heights family. Corporal Daniel Hardester and Privates Ricardo Dennis and Dwayne Stevenson were on the scene of a domestic violence call when they heard screams for help coming from across the street.
They noticed smoke coming from the rear of a single-family home and, without hesitation, entered the residence to search for occupants. The deputies safely evacuated three children and an adult from the residence, preventing a potentially tragic situation.
Corporal Mauricio Casanova was awarded the Gold Medal of Valor and Deputy Sheriff of the Year for his bravery and decisive actions during an April 2012, shooting. Casanova, along with members from the Sheriff’s Landlord and Tenant Division responded to a residence in Hyattsville to execute a court ordered eviction. As deputies attempted to enter the residence they were met with resistance from the homeowner, and the situation turned volatile.
Fearing for their safety, deputies discharged their firearms as they moved to positions of cover. As shots were fired, Casanova noticed the locksmith, who had been on the scene to assist deputies with entry into the home, scrambling to get out of the line of fire. Casanova, without regard for his own personal safety, left his position of cover, ran to the locksmith and covered him with his own body until the shooting stopped.
Sheriff High, the President of this year’s Public Safety Valor Awards, said, “The four Deputies honored today represent the very best of the law enforcement profession. I commend them for their brave and heroic efforts, and I salute all of today’s honorees who have dedicated themselves to serving others.”
For more information contact the Prince George’s County Sheriff’s Press Information Office at 301-780-2773.