November 4, 2004 - Knoxville Mayor Bill Haslam
and Police Chief Sterling Owen today named Officer Mike Waggoner,
Officer Robert Hembree and Investigator Steve Still as the September
Officers of the Month. Officer Waggoner has been with KPD since 1974.
Officer Hembree has been with the department since 1997 and Investigator
Still has been on the force since 1995.
Owen said that on September 27th Officers Waggoner and Hembree caught
twenty year-old Jason Cates breaking into a vehicle in the Old City.
Cates was arrested and charged with three counts of vehicle burglary.
Realizing this probably was not Cates' first time of breaking into
vehicles, the officers notified Investigator Sill to conduct an additional
During an interview, the suspect admitted to committing several additional
vehicle burglaries in the Old City, Downtown, and UT areas. The suspect
showed the officers locations where these incidents had occurred including
what type of vehicle had been burglarized, what items had been stolen,
and how he got into the vehicles.
Based on that information Cates was charged with fourteen additional
auto burglaries and one count of auto theft. In addition, Investigators
with the University of Tennessee Police Department are currently investigating
Cates for approximately fourteen auto burglaries that occurred on
their campus and expect to file charges soon.
Chief Owen said, "Attention to detail, dedication and a desire to
maintain expected professional standards was the key to the success
of this investigation. All of these traits were demonstrated in this
joint effort by these fine officers."
Mayor Haslam said, "This is an excellent example of how teamwork improves
the overall success of any endeavor. The Knoxville community is appreciative
of their fine work and dedication to making the streets of Knoxville
safer for all to enjoy."
The officers will receive a signed certificate from the Mayor and
Chief and a free dinner from Ruby Tuesday Restaurant.