DUI Crackdown Earns Deputy, His Squad and Parents, Sheriff's Kudos
The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office awarded this quarter's Citizen Award to Michael and Ruth Fauskee. Their son, Deputy Christopher M. Fauskee, and his 11 co-workers, as "Operation 3D," won Outstanding Squad recognition.
Mike and Ruth Fauskee and the Operation 3D DUI squad of the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office had something in common Sept. 14 at the North Falkenburg Jail Assembly room.
There, the Fauskees and the squad each received kudos at the sheriff’s office’s Awards Recognition Ceremony, held quarterly to recognize employees and citizens who work to make the streets safer for Greater Brandon and beyond.
The Fauskees, of Riverview, received the quarterly “Citizen Award” for supporting the squad that arrests drunken drivers, conducts sobriety checkpoints and educates the community about the consequences of not following the squad’s motto, “Don’t Drink and Drive.”
The squad itself, and each of its 12 members (see below), received recognition as this quarter's “Outstanding Squad.”
The Fauskees said in an interview that they have had lots of experience working with a team of players, as they did for their son, Deputy Christopher M. Fauskee, as a boy growing up in soccer leagues. Besides coaching responsibilities, the Fauskees said they made sure the team had refreshments after each game.
Now, their son son plays for a team with a grander mission, the Operation 3D squad, for which the Fauskees have been recognized for providing refreshments for deputies working sobriety checkpoints.
“Over the past two years, Mike and Ruth Fauskee have been supporters of the Operation 3D DUI squad by attending over 24 DUI checkpoints and providing food and beverages to those working the checkpoint,” said Major Mike Perotti, in announcing the couple’s award.
"We'll bring water and snacks," said Michael Fauskee. "And when one of the officers [Billy J. Kruthers] was deployed, we had a going-away party for him."
The Fauskees said their work brings them one step closer to the action. And that as members of the Hillsborough County chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Drivers, they know full well the message that needs to be hammered home to motorists who drink and drive.
"It's really kind of shocking what you see sometimes," Ruth Fauskee said. "Come to a checkpoint for yourself and see what these guys do. It will open your eyes [to the dangers out there]."
"It's never going to stop," Michael Fauskee said about drunken driving. "All you can do is try to keep it in check."
To illustrate the breadth and depth of the squad’s work, Perotti noted that in 2010 the squad made 1,136 arrests for driving under the influence (DUI). Moreover, the squad conducted 34 checkpoints, issued more than 1,000 traffic citations and gave about 1,500 hours of courtroom testimony.
The squad also coordinated an eight-hour interactive DUI education presentation countywide for Hillsborough County high school students. “The program was presented to over 6,000 students at more more than 20 high schools, during 33 presentations in the past school year,” Perotti said.
The squad has been recognized as well with the Outstanding Dedication To Sobriety Checkpoints Award, given in 2010 by the Florida chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving Florida, and the DUI Sustained Enforcement Award, presented in both 2009 and 2010 by the Florida Department of Transportation.
The following squad members were recognized at the Sept. 14 ceremony:
- Sgt. William G. Porter
- Cpl. Brendan D. Fitzgerald
- Deputy Timoty A. Berg
- Deputy Jeffrey M. Carson
- Deputy Beau T. Dobson
- Deputy Christopher M. Fauskee
- Deputy David J. Kennedy
- Deputy Billy J. Kruthers
- Deputy Matthew J. McMurphy
- Deputy Lawrence A. Morrell
- Deputy Brian E. Pulido
- Deputy Jeffrey M. Ramer
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