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Suffolk officers, business to be honored

Two leaders in the Suffolk Police Department will be recognized next month by the Hampton Roads Crime Line.

Capt. Stephanie Burch has been selected as the city’s Top Cop by the Hampton Roads Regional Crime Line.

She will be honored during the organization’s 2008 Crime Line Top Cop Awards Dinner on Oct. 4. One police officer from each Hampton Roads community will be recognized during the annual fundraiser.

Burch, who heads the department’s Criminal Investigations section, was nominated for the award in part because of the many projects and initiatives that she coordinated and led within the city’s police department, said city spokeswoman Debbie George.

Burch has been instrumental in the department’s health and fitness program, the establishing of the Youth Public Safety Academy, and the use of statistical data to help identify and address crime trends in the city, according to the city’s press release. This past year, Burch also researched and rewrote the city’s alarm ordinance to help reduce false alarm calls for service and to encourage responsible alarm owner and alarm industry behavior.

Burch is married to Sgt. Paul Burch, also of the Suffolk Police Department. They have two children, Carson and Campbell.

Police Chief William Freeman will be receiving the Crime Line’s lifetime achievement award. Freeman, who rose through the ranks of the city’s police department, is being recognized for 38 years of service to the department and the law enforcement profession.

Freeman is married to Carolyn Freeman. The couple has four children, Brian, William Jr., Kelly and Sheryl.

Suffolk‘s officers aren’t the only ones being recognized at the dinner. Sentara Obici Ambulatory Surgery Center was selected as Hampton Roads’ Outstanding Corporation.

Sentara was selected for the outstanding community partnership and cooperation it provided during the April 28 tornado. Immediately after the tornado, Sentara Obici Ambulatory Surgery Center allowed emergency responders to turn a large portion of their facility into the Incident Command Center for the rescue and recovery effort.

The Top Cop dinner is being held at the Holiday Inn Hampton Hotel and Conference Center. Anyone interested in obtaining tickets should contact Ross Forster at 486-3011.