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Friday, February 22 , 2019, 11:36 pm | Fair 43º


Santa Barbara Police Department, Kiwanis Club Honor Citizens with Extra Step Awards

Seven Santa Barbara men who helped their fellow citizens and law enforcement officers were honored by the Kiwanis Club and Santa Barbara Police Department on Wednesday at the Extra Step Awards.

Each of them was nominated by a member of the Police Department, in a tradition that started in the 1970s and has now spread to 10 other Kiwanis Clubs, Sgt. Riley Harwood said.

Jorge Montano helped officers investigating a violent robbery and false imprisonment case at the apartment complex where he is manager, in the 700 block of West Cota Street. Sgt. Shawn Hill nominated Montano for his help with Spanish interpretation and access to his office for police interviews, Harwood said.

Joe Clemens was nominated by Detective Brian Larson for his quick thinking in getting video of suspects and the getaway car during an armed robbery of a downtown jewelry store.

Frank Lopez, the owner of Santa Barbara Towing, was selected for having “consistently provided outstanding, reliable service to officers and citizens,” Harwood said.

Santa Barbara City Councilwoman Cathy Murillo, left, poses with the 2015 Extra Step Award recipients, including, from left, Frank Lopez, Moises Medina, Daniel Burkhalter, James Baugh, Austin Vierhus and Jorge Montano. They were recognized by Police Chief Cam Sanchez and Kiwanis Club of Santa Barbara president Cory Sherman, at right. ​(Sgt. Riley Harwood photo / Santa Barbara Police Department)

James Baugh and Austin Vierhus were able to recover property stolen from Baugh in a burglary and helped with the suspect’s arrest, according to police.

Harwood said Santa Barbara citizen Daniel Burkhalter rescued a fellow employee at Blenders in the Grass while she was attacked, perhaps saving her from a sexual assault. Burkhalter fought with the suspect which let the woman escape, police said.

The SBPD has recently focused a lot of efforts on Lower State Street and recognized Moises Medina, owner of La Aroma de Havana Cigar Lounge at 411 State St., for his help providing eyewitness accounts of criminal activity in the area. He was nominated by community services liaison Charles Reed, who works in the city’s restorative policing program. 

Noozhawk news editor Giana Magnoli can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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