background image

Indian Country Intelligence Network Awards Four Officers of SRPD

Francis Bradley Sr., Chief of Police, Hualapai Nation Police Department and president of ICIN, and ICIN Vice President Karl Auerbach and SRPMIC Chief of Police presented Det. Treva Olivas with the 2016 Police Officer of the Year by ICIN for her exceptional service to the Community.

On December 13, four Salt River Police Department officers were recognized at the annual Indian Country Intelligence Network (ICIN) Awards Ceremony, held at the Anthony Shelde Community Center in Maricopa on the Gila River Indian Community. The event was hosted by the Inter Tribal Council of Arizona. Twenty police departments from Indian communities, including Bureau of Indian Affairs police departments, were recognized.

ICIN was created in 1994 as the first organization in Indian Country law enforcement to establish a statewide collaborative partnership among Arizona’s 22 Indian tribes to improve communication and training, effect positive changes and strengthen relationships with neighboring jurisdictions.

SRPD Chief Karl Auerbach, who is also the vice president and founder of the ICIN, shared the organization’s history during his speech.

“About 23 years ago, the SRPMIC was investigating a violent perpetrator, and with some research we learned that that person was also a perpetrator here in the Gila River Indian Community,” Auerbach said. “I reached out to friends who worked for the BIA law enforcement here in Gila River, and we all worked collaboratively with the United States Attorney’s Office, located the suspect, put a case together, got a federal arrest warrant, and placed the suspect in jail for 20 years.”

That case was what sparked the partnership, Auerbach said. With support of the then–police chief, Auerbach reached out to other tribal communities in the state and the group started holding monthly meetings, at which tribal law enforcement groups exchanged training techniques, policies and procedures, and data.

Since then, ICIN has reached out to nearby states, who are also doing the same thing.

“There are still many states in the country who do not recognize Indian Community police officers, even when they are sworn-in officers,” Auerbach said.

SRPMIC President and former Chief Judge Delbert Ray, Sr. was the ceremony’s keynote speaker.

Ray, a judge for 24 years in Arizona, said he was proud to see the many men and women in their black and blue police uniforms.

Award recipients stand with SRPD Staff and SRPMIC President. (L to R) Michaela Sample, Derek Benally, Treva Olivas, Steve Larson, SRPMIC President Delbert Ray, Sr., Karl Auerbach, Delvin Duong and Jonathan Gann.
“I see the court system, law enforcement and advocacy system always looking for ways to refine and to help the fairness of the system,” Ray said. “I’ve seen some good practitioners and some that needed some improvement, but as I sit here and listen to the roots of ICIN, the value of age is to be able to learn and share those things. In this day and age, we are ahead of the game, and it is only because of the work and effort from the people in this room. I applaud you. I am proud of all the tribal communities.”

ICIN has recognized those who have done exemplary work in the many areas of law enforcement.

“I would like to congratulate each and every one of you who will be receiving these awards for your contributions provided to your organization,” Ray said. “To all law enforcement personnel, please stay safe and thank you for your service.”

Awards were presented in six categories: the Act of Exceptional Valor Award, Outstanding Exceptional Service Award, Community Service Award, Life Saving Award, Best Practices Award and Police Officer of the Year.

From the Community, SRPD Det. Treva Olivas was named the 2016 Police Officer of the Year by the ICIN for her exceptional service to help prosecute an individual accused of embezzling thousands of dollars from the Community.

Three other SRPD officers were recognized. Off. Derek Benally received a Live Saving Award, Lt. Steve Larson received an Outstanding Exceptional Service Award, and Det. Delvin Duong also received an Outstanding Exceptional Service Award.

ICIN also comprises law-enforcement executives from tribal law enforcement and corrections agencies as well as representatives from the Bureau of Indian Affairs, FBI, U.S. Attorney’s Office, Arizona Department of Public Safety, and other state and municipal agencies from Arizona.