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Officers, citizens honored at Pueblo Police Department's awards ceremony

Posted at 5:47 PM, Dec 12, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-12 20:20:16-05

PUEBLO — On Thursday dozens of officers were honored for their service and sacrifice in the Pueblo community.

About 40 officers were recipients at the Pueblo Police Department's annual awards luncheon. One of them was Officer Jonathan Bell.

He said, "They all saved my life so it means a lot to me."

It was on April 9, 2019 when Officer Bell was seriously wounded while trying to track down a wanted man in Pueblo.

"As soon as he ran from me me and Julee chased him. He ran around a corner and he ended up shooting me six times in the legs, and I started bleeding out."

After undergoing multiple surgeries and, even today, still recovering, he's back on his feet and back at work. This hero in blue - awarded the Purple Heart and Medal of Honor.

He said, "It means a lot. Like I said I'm really thankful for it."

Fellow Officer Jonathan Vicars received the Chief's Award of Merit for his work in decreasing the number of stolen vehicles.

He said, "We just took it upon ourselves to be proactive."

Officer Bryan Gonzales was given a Department Commendation and Chief's Award of Merit for helping a local family who lost their child earlier this year.

He said, "It's a great feeling especially to be among the heroes that I work with every day, my brothers and sisters at the Pueblo Police Department."

It's a big day for all of them and they know the work doesn't stop here.

Officer Vicars said, "We're just going to continue to improve whether it's response time, whether it's the impact we have on a citizen's life at that given time, just continue to do our jobs day in and day out."

A few words were shared from Pueblo Police Chief Troy Davenport. As far as strides the department is making, he says the crime rate in Pueblo is going down.

Besides the officers who were honored six citizens were also awarded for their acts of bravery this past year.