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 Eric Taveras is the 2013 Amtrak Police Officer of the Year. In 2013, Officer Taveras was assigned to the New York Division’s Criminal Investigation Unit and conducted criminal and background investigations. “Officer Taveras was chosen for this prestigious award for his significant contributions in protecting the Amtrak community,” said Chief of Police Polly Hanson. “His persistence and unwavering professionalism is worthy of recognition, and we are honored to present him with this award.” Chief of Police Polly Hanson, Board of Directors Member Albert DiClemente, and Amtrak President and CEO Joseph Boardman presented the award to Officer Taveras for his significant contributions to the Amtrak community, including 18 background investigations, acting as primary investigator on 18 criminal cases, and participating in the execution of three search warrants. In August 2013, Officer Taveras initiated a credit card fraud/ identity theft investigation involving the fraudulent purchase of Amtrak tickets. Taveras and other officers made contact with the suspect who was traveling on board a train with a companion. During the investigation, it was determined that both parties knew that the tickets were purchased with an unauthorized credit card. The companion was also found to be in possession of credit card information of 15 other victims along with text messages implicating both in the crime. Both were arrested and charged accordingly In another case, the officers from the New York Command received information from the Massachusetts State Police that a violent fugitive was traveling aboard an Amtrak train from Massachusetts to New York with a final destination of Kissimmee, Florida. The suspect was wanted in connection to an attempted murder and 14 armed robberies of pharmaceutical stores of Oxycontin/Oxycodone pills with estimated value of over $400,000. Officer Taveras located the suspect in the Amtrak waiting area where he and other officers confirmed his identify. Officer Taveras placed the suspect into custody and facilitated the investigation by participating with the Massachusetts State police in drafting subsequent warrants. Officer Taveras has been employed with the Amtrak Police Department since February 8, 1996 and has worked in patrol and investigations. He was also awarded “Officer of the Month” for June and August in 2013. The Officer of the Year award is a prestigious honor, presented this year during National Police Week which was created by President John F. Kennedy in 1962 to honor law enforcement officers who have paid the ultimate sacrifice protecting other (Amtrak - posted 5/14) 

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