City of Pleasant Hill

Posted on: September 13, 2017

Pleasant Hill Police Officers Recognized for Gallantry in the Line of Duty

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Pleasant Hill Police Chief, Al Pizzano presented the Medal of Valor, the department’s second highest award, to Officer Randall Rice on Tuesday, September 12, 2017 at the Pleasant Hill City Council Meeting. Additionally, he presented the department’s Meritorious Service Commendation to Officers Chelsea Borich and Paul Kuhlman.

On June 23, 2017, a man, armed with a firearm, confronted his estranged girlfriend over the custody of their child. Upon the arrival of Officer Rice, the man, identified as Juan Martinez, brandished the firearm.  At which time, Officer Rice engaged Mr. Martinez in conversation to protect the victim and her child. Officer Rice calmly and compassionately requested Mr. Martinez put his firearm down, but he refused.  Both Police Officers Chelsea Borich and Paul Kuhlman responded to assist Officer Rice.  Upon their arrival, the three Officers isolated and contained Mr. Martinez, preventing him from escaping and harming others. In doing so they selflessly put themselves in danger to save others. These Officers, with the assistance of the Polk County Sheriff’s Office and Altoona Police Department worked together to de-escalate the situation and take Mr. Martinez into custody without incident. 

Officer Rice received the Medal of Valor for exhibiting unusual courage in the performance of his duties. Without any cover and concealment, he put himself between the armed man and the victim. Officer Rice’s heroic and swift actions saved a women and her child from danger.  Officers Borich and Kuhlman received the department’s Meritorious Service Commendation for their teamwork in this treacherous situation. Without regard for their own safety, Officer Borich and Kuhlman contained the man, preventing him from escape and endangering others.

 The professionalism, compassion, and bravery our officers, the Polk County Sheriff’s Office and Altoona Police Department showed towards all parties involved in this incident allowed for the best possible outcome, no one hurt and the man in jail.

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