CRAIG T. KOJIMA / CKOJIMA@STARBULLETIN.COM
The Honolulu Police Department named Officer Gerald Scoville Jr., right, Police Officer of the Year yesterday at Waialae Country Club. With him were his wife, Cara, and son, Adam.
HPD hails Scoville’s way
When a large wildfire started in Waialua last August, the Honolulu Fire Department asked police whether anybody had an extensive knowledge of the area.
Additional police AWARDS
The Honolulu Police Department also honored four others for their work with the department.
» Reserve Officer of the Year: Officer Joseph Becera, recognized for 31 years of reserve service and putting in 611 hours of work last year though only 240 is required of reserve officers
» Police Parent of the Year: Officer Derek Dela Cruz, recognized for continuing to work and raise his family while recovering from a 1995 motorcycle accident that left him in a coma for more than a month
» Civilian Employee of the Year: Wayne Kimoto, recognized for his founding of DNA investigations within the department, and his work as one of two forensic lab supervisors
» Outstanding Citizen of the Year: U.S. Attorney Ed Kubo, for his aggressive work within communities to combat drugs
Police officials immediately pointed to Officer Gerald Scoville Jr., a 50-year-old longtime Wahiawa resident.
Scoville grabbed a map, told firefighters of farm areas and who owned them, gave them contact numbers and showed them access trails.
"My job allows me to travel the whole area," Scoville said. "So I was able to help out on where the hot spots were."
His knowledge of his beat earned him praise as the Honolulu Police Department's Officer of the Year yesterday during a Police Week celebration at the Waialae Country Club.
"He's not one of those guys that gives out 100 speeding tickets," said Maj. Bart Huber, who heads the police district covering Wahiawa, Mililani and the North Shore. "There's more than one way to get the job done. But he chooses the way that involves everybody."
Wahiawa saw a problem with people riding all-terrain vehicles on the roads, freeways and state land. Scoville saw the potential for accidents, and what it was doing to the land.
Scoville met with community groups, officers with the state Department of Land and Natural Resources and the Army to step up enforcement and place barriers to discourage ATV use.
"We showed the erosion, showed the dead plants," Scoville said. "It's mostly just education."
Huber said he sees that resolve in Scoville every other day. Every other day, Scoville is in Huber's office, bouncing out ideas.
"His strongest suit isn't really enforcement, but prevention," Huber said. "He is often looking for solutions so he doesn't have to keep responding to the same type of calls."
Farmers in the area also have Scoville's cell phone number, just in case they need to report any thefts in the fields.
"I wish I had a dozen like him every day," Huber said. "You'd see a lot less crime."
Scoville was born in Germany, when his father was stationed there while in the U.S. Air Force. Scoville has lived in Wahiawa for 40 years and does not intend to work anywhere besides his adopted hometown. He was humble about his award and said his longtime connection with the area motivates him.
"I think the people and the community getting involved, helping out with their ideas and their connections, drives me," Scoville said. "Plus the area is so beautiful down there."
Friday, May 16, 2008
The Honolulu Police Department officer of the year is Gerald Scoville Jr. Originally, this article did not identify him as a junior.