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City of Knoxville, Tennessee
Madeline Rogero, Mayor

For Immediate Release
Officers of the Month
Civilians of the Month
Teamwork Earns Officers Special Award

May 6, 2004 - Knoxville Mayor Bill Haslam and Deputy Chief Gus Paidousis today announced the March 2004 Officers of the Month. Officer Greg Taylor, Officer James Cox, and Officer Pete Franzen share in the award for their apprehension of three suspects caught stealing methamphetamine production products. Officer Franzen has been with the department for 7 years. Officer Cox has been with KPD for 2 years and Officer Taylor is a 25-year veteran.

Deputy Chief Paidousis said that on March 11, 2004 at approximately 4:40 a.m., while on routine patrol, Officers Taylor and Cox spotted three individuals behind a business on Dutch Valley Drive. The three suspects were siphoning anhydrous ammonia from the company's tanks into several smaller tanks the suspects had in their possession.

When the officers approached the suspects, they ran into the woods behind the business. The first suspect was apprehended after he collapsed from breathing the ammonia. With the help of Officer Franzen's K-9 partner Tasja, the second suspect was located hiding underneath some brush.

The third suspect was arrested three hours later near a shopping center on Broadway. All three suspects were charged with one count of theft and evading arrest.

Chief Paidousis said, "The suspects were stealing the ammonia to use in the manufacturing and selling of meth. Due to these officers' efforts, information has been obtained on additional suspects and meth labs in the East Tennessee region." Mayor Haslam said, "Meth production and theft of the products used in the production of the illegal drug is a growing problem throughout Tennessee. These officers did an outstanding job of removing these three individuals from our streets and hopefully, out of meth production for a long time to come."

Chief Paidousis said, "Due to the dedication, commitment, and perseverance of these officers, the illegal drug was kept from reaching our streets and out of the hands of our children. These officers are commended for a job well done."

The officers will receive a signed certificate from the Mayor and Chief along with a free dinner from Ruby Tuesday Restaurant.

For More Information Contact:
Darrell DeBusk
Public Information Officer
(865) 215-7229

For Immediate Release
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