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MPD honors their own

Barnette, McClaren, and Mims awarded

Three members of the Minden Police Department were given achievement awards for 2017 at the department’s Christmas party Saturday.

Lt. Ryan Barnette was awarded Officer of the Year. Supervisor of the Year went to Sgt. Chris McClaren, and the Chief’s Choice Award was given to Patrol Officer Antonio Mims.

Police Chief Steve Cropper, who chose each 2017 award recipient, said he commends Barnette on his work since moving to a new position last year.

“Ryan went from uniform patrol to investigations, and he’s done a really good job,” Cropper said. “He jumped in with both feet, took hold, and he’s done a really good job back there. That’s why he was chosen to be Officer of the Year.”

Cropper also explained his selection of McClaren for Supervisor of the Year.

“He does a really good job making sure his guys do the right thing,” Cropper said. “Any time there’s an issue, he fills us in right away. He does a tremendous job supervising his shift.”

Lastly, Cropper said he selected Mims for the Chief’s Choice award because of his attention to detail and willingness to go the extra mile.

“He pays attention to people he makes contact with on the street,” Cropper said. “Over the past six months, he’s helped us solve several crimes by just keeping track of who he’s made contact with and being able to recognize different suspects.”

In fact, Cropper said it was Mims who identified the suspect in the City ArtWorks break-in last week. Information on this case was reported in Tuesday’s issue of the Press-Herald.

Barnette, who has served on the Minden force since 2008, expressed his response to being named Officer of the Year.

“It’s a very humbling experience,” he said. “To be acknowledged by Chief Cropper, whom we all have respect for and appreciate so much, is particularly humbling.”

Barnette said he developed an interest in law enforcement at an early age, partially from watching his older brother do the job. He said he would like to thank Lt. Chris Cheatham for his continued guidance.

“He was my field training officer when I was first hired at the police department, and now he’s my immediate supervisor in investigations,” Barnette said. “So he’s had the difficult task of training me twice.”

Barnette said he appreciates the camaraderie of the police department.

“My favorite part of the job is the people that I work with,” he said. “We’re a very close-knit group of people. The best friends that I’ve made in my entire life have come from my time in the police department.”

Lastly, Barnette said he commends and respects the other two award recipients for their work.

“Those awards are very well-deserved by those two guys, and we’re very fortunate to have them,” he said. “They go above and beyond, and I’m very proud that they were recognized for their efforts.”