Former Lake Macquarie Detective Senior Sergeant Patrick Joseph Crass has been recognised for his outstanding service to the NSW Police Force.
The highly-ranked officer, who spent a number of years in the district more than a decade ago, was presented the prestigious Australia Police Medal (APM).
Acting Commissioner Karen Webb APM and Deputy Premier and Minister for Police Paul Toole congratulated 10 employees as part of this year’s Australia Day Honours.
Nine were awarded APMs while civilian Dr Judith Perl took home the Public Service Medal (PSM).
Detective Senior Sergeant Crass and Dr Perl were joined by Detective Superintendent Robert Anthony Critchlow, Inspector Tina Frances Davies, Detective Senior Sergeant Stephen John Day, Detective Superintendent Jayne Doherty, Superintendent Paul Jonathon Glinn, Superintendent Andrew James Holland, Inspector Terry John Holt and Sergeant Lawrence George Lucas.
The APM was established in 1986 and is now announced twice a year, on Australia Day and the Queen’s Birthday in June.
Acting Commissioner Webb said the awards reflected the dedication of each employee to the NSWPF and the people of NSW.
“It is a great honour to recognise the exceptional careers of these employees and pay tribute to their commitment, professionalism and dedication,” she stated.
“I am proud that these individuals represent the organisation and thank them for their ongoing contribution to policing.”
Mr Toole said the 10 recipients exemplified dedication to the force.
“Police go above and beyond to serve and protect our community every day and these worthy recipients are shining examples of that,” he explained.
“While they have diverse stories, they share many similar traits including a focus on building relationships with their communities, supporting victims of crime and their families and a commitment to nurturing those same traits in other officers coming through the ranks.”
Detective Senior Sergeant Crass joined the NSW Police Force in 1988 and was posted to City Central performing general duties before starting a distinguished criminal investigation career in 1991 with the Major Crime Squad South and Drug Squad, undertaking both investigative and undercover duties across the state.
In 1998, he transferred to the Tuggerah Lakes Local Area Command returning to general duties and later endorsed to the rank of Sergeant at Brisbane Water in 2004.
In 2007, he was promoted to the rank of Detective Senior Sergeant with the Lake Macquarie Special Operations Group.
While in the Hunter region, he drove proactive policing strategies into drug and property theft.
In 2010, he returned to Tuggerah Lakes where he continues to lead local police in proactive criminal investigations.
Detective Senior Sergeant Crass has spent the entirety of his career in field operations.
He is recognised by his peers and superiors for his outstanding commitment to the policing profession and the ongoing mentoring of junior police, particularly in the field of drug investigations.
Acknowledged as a NSWPF Drug Expert for the past 20 years, he continues to provide expert evidence to assist both Local and District Courts pertaining to drug matters.
Detective Senior Sergeant Crass has received multiple tributes; including a Commissioners Commendation for Service in 1993 for his pivotal role as an undercover operative in Strike Force Honey Pot, gaining evidence on large-scale property crime offences across south western Sydney.
In 2016, he was formally acknowledged by the NSW Crime Commission in relation to Strike Force Salamande, a complex drug investigation which resulted in the seizure of significant amounts drugs and cash.
Detective Senior Sergeant Crass is an accomplished police officer who has demonstrated dedicated and exemplary police service to the people of New South Wales for more than 32 years.
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