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Minneapolis Police Dept. Hands Out 2011 Awards

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(credit: CBS) Holly Wagner
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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Minneapolis Police officials handed out dozens of awards to deserving officers and citizens from the 2011 year at a ceremony late Thursday morning.

Sergeant Katie Blackwell was honored with two awards and she couldn’t be more deserving. Sgt. Blackwell received the Chief’s Award of Merit and the Life Saving Award.

She was honored for how she handled a life-threatening situation with a man suffering from mental illness.

Blackwell found herself on a call where a man opened the door and drew a bow and arrow on her. She diffused the situation without anyone getting hurt.

On another call, she and her partner saved an elderly man’s life. Blackwell did CPR on him for five minutes before he started breathing, while his wife and daughter looked on.

She told us this especially hit home.

“I know for the gentleman with the cardiac I thought it about later because my father died of a cardiac arrest,” Blackwell said. “So I hope that someone would do CPR to save someone else. It’s a good feeling when you can help other people.”

Blackwell is also a Red Bull with the Minnesota National Guard who served in Bosnia and Iraq.

While she was in Iraq, her convoy was hit by a roadside bomb and she suffered minor injuries. Blackwell has been with the department for nine years.

She has made it a priority to train other police officers in how to handle police calls involving veterans.

During 2011, 47 Minneapolis Police officers and non-sworn employees along with two personnel from other agencies received the Chief’s Award of Merit for their service to the department.

Twenty-six sworn personnel, two Park Police officers and one non-sworn employee were awarded the Department Award of Merit, 10 officers received the Distinguished Service Award, 38 officers were awarded the Medal of Commendation, 26 officers, two Park Police officers and one civilian were decorated with the Lifesaving Award and two officers and two civilians were decorated for bravery with the Medal of Valor.

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