Frederick Ryan, Chief of Police
112 Mystic St.
Arlington, MA 02474
For Immediate Release
Thursday, Oct. 30, 2014
Contact: Captain Richard Flynn, PIO
Email: [email protected]
Contact: John Guilfoil
Email: [email protected]
Arlington Police Officers Awarded Medals of Valor for Acts of Courage
ARLINGTON — Police Chief Frederick Ryan is pleased to announce that three Arlington Police Officers were chosen by the Massachusetts Police Association (MPA) to receive Medals of Valor for acts of courage in the line of duty.
The medals were given at the MPA’s 114th annual convention yesterday at the Radisson Hotel in Plymouth Harbor
Officers Michael Foley, Scott Paradis, and Brett Blanciforti were present, with the families, to receive the awards. The Arlington officers are three of the eight police officers awarded the Medal of Valor statewide this year.
“It is gratifying and humbling to watch three of our officers receive this great honor by such a well-respected organization,” said Arlington Police Chief Frederick Ryan, who was also in attendance. “Police officers put themselves in harm’s way, oftentimes risking their lives, and the work of these eight officers is inspiring. I congratulate each officer on their well-deserved honors.”
According to the MPA, the Medal of Valor is presented yearly to police officers from around the state who have risked their lives in the line of duty and have demonstrated courage and true professionalism.
Officer Foley, a five-year veteran, was chosen for his work in January, when he stopped two armed bank robbers who robbed the Leader Bank on Massachusetts Avenue at gunpoint on January 17. That’s when Foley fired his service weapon at a suspect brandishing a firearm, injuring the suspect and leading to the capture of both alleged robbers. Both men were charged with bank robbery and assault by means of a dangerous weapon. It is also believed that the men were involved in another robbery earlier in the day.
“The actions of Arlington Police Officer Michael Foley are in keeping with the highest traditions of police service,” said Arlington Police Sergeant Rick Pedrini in nominating Foley for the award. “His quick response and ability to perform under pressure resulted in the arrests of two career felons and he deserves to be commended. He is a credit to the Arlington Police Department.”
Officers Paradis and Blanciforti received their Medals for actions performed on June 1, which put a reputed serial rapist and Level 3 sex offender back behind bars.
Essie Billingslea allegedly broke into a woman’s home, assaulted and raped her, and threatened to kill her. During the violent assault, the victim’s friend called and could tell based on her responses that something was wrong, so he immediately alerted the Arlington police.
Officers Paradis and Blanciforti arrived on the scene quickly to perform a well-being check, and saw Billingslea running way. They chased him and captured him nearby.
“The professional response of Officers Paradis and Blanciforti to a routine well-being check resulted in the apprehension of a violent felon and quite possibly saved a woman’s life,” said Pedrini in his nomination.
The MPA award ceremony was the highlight of the 2014 three-day convention. It kicked off on Wednesday, October 29, with a golf tournament and closes later today.