Every year officials with the Delaware County Sheriff's Office host an annual Christmas party, which includes an assortment of awards, in order to recognize deputies who go above and beyond duirand takes time to recognize those deputies who go above and beyond.

This year was no different with four awards presented to deputies by Delaware County Sheriff Harlan Moore at the beginning of event.

There were two types of awards given this year: the distinguished service award and a special commendation award.

“I’ve been honored to work with some of the finest men and women who constantly place the safety and well being of those we serve ahead of their own," Moore said. "They all deserve recognition and thanks for their hard work and dedication.”

The Distinguished Service Award is presented to any deputy for any act involving great personal risk while performing his or her duties.

Sergeant Brandon Houston and Deputy Ronnie Williams were awarded the Distinguished Service Award for their actions which resulted in the apprehension of a double murder suspect from a nearby community.

Moore said both deputies were able to safely place the armed suspect under arrest and recover the firearm suspected of being used in a crime.

After reading off the award citation Moore remarked, “this is the most armed county I’ve seen.”

The Special Commendation Award is presented for any action which benefits the sheriff’s office by implementing or improving an administrative or tactical procedure, policy or training.

Moore said the award is presented to deputies who perform above normal requirements and demonstrate faithfulness, perseverance, initiative, ability and observation, while distinguishing himself/herself by demonstrating a willingness and ability to set a professional example for peers and a high degree of loyalty and dedication.

Reserve Deputy Melissa Kaser was the first of two deputies awarded this award.   

Moore referred to Kaser as a “jack of all trades” and recognized her for the reorganizing the evidence storage area, being an investigator for the majority of child support violators and managing walk in reports and in jail incidents.

Detective Tracy Shaw was the second recipient of the Special Commendation Award.

He completed 107 new criminal cases in the 2017 year of which many involve young children and allegations of sexual assault by adults.

Shaw is also part of a team which reviews and coordinates the investigation of sex crimes across the county and is a member of the Delaware County Children's Special Advocacy Network (DCCSAN).

In the citations, Moore wrote: “Dep. Kaser and Det. Shaw have performed in the highest traditions of the Sheriff’s Office and the law enforcement profession."