December 29, 2005 - Knoxville Mayor Bill
Haslam and Police Chief Sterling Owen today named Officer Ryan Flores
as the Knoxville Police Department's Officer of the Month for October.
Officer Flores has been with the department since January 1997.
Chief Owen said that on October 27, 2005 at approximately 11:00 a.m.,
Officer Flores was patrolling the Montgomery Village area searching
for a suspect possibly involved in a business robbery and strong-armed
robbery. Officer Flores spotted an individual on Joe Lewis Road who
matched the description of the suspect. When Officer Flores approached
the male he immediately ran from the officer. Officer Flores pursued
the suspect on foot while requesting assistance.
Flores caught the fleeing suspect and attempted to take him into custody,
but the suspect began fighting with the officer. Officer Dan Paidousis
arrived on the scene to assist Officer Flores. The suspect, who was
identified as Thamar Smith (DOB 12-28-83), continued to fight with
both officers. In an attempt to control Smith, Officer Paidousis sprayed
the suspect with Vexor but it did not slow the suspect's violent actions.
At that point, the officers used a Taser on the suspect, which also
proved to be ineffective in controlling the suspect.
With the help of two additional officers, the suspect was eventually
secured, but not before Officer Flores had been struck several times
by the suspect in the face and upper body resulting in cuts on his
leg, head, and hands. Officer Flores charged Smith with Resisting
Arrest and Assault.
Chief Owen said, "Officer Flores knew the importance of taking
the suspect into custody and put his safety and well being in harms
way in order to protect the community and others who may have come
in contact with this violent fleeing felon."
Mayor Haslam said, "Officer Flores' actions possibly prevented
another innocent citizen from becoming a victim. Officer Flores'
actions demonstrate his commitment to the Knoxville Police Department
and to the citizens of Knoxville."
Officer Flores will receive a signed certificate from the Mayor
and Chief along with a free dinner from Bayou Bay Seafood House.