BATAVIA – Sgt. Kevin Stankowitz and Officer Ian Abrahamsen of the Carpentersville Police Department were named co-winners of the Kane County Officer of the Year - Louis Spuhler Award for outstanding police work in 2019, officials announced in a news release.
According to a nomination letter submitted by Chief Michael Kilbourne, Stankowitz and Abrahamsen responded to the area of Wakefield Drive and Berkshire Circle on June 18 on a report of a gang member present and possibly in possession of a handgun.
The suspect flashed gang signs at the officers’ unmarked car as it passed, so they turned around and drove towards him. He drew a .38 special handgun from his waistband and opened fire. He fired six times, striking the car with three bullets, the release stated.
Abrahamsen returned fire. The offender was struck twice, but ran into a house. Eventually he gave in to commands to surrender and exited the house without any further confrontation.
“All too often, similar violent situations sadly end with law enforcement officers losing their lives,” Kilbourne stated in the release. “Sgt. Kevin Stankowitz and Officer Ian Abrahamsen acted the way they were trained in a profession they proudly serve. The focus of the officers ensured only one outcome, to protect those we serve and go home at the end of their shift to their families.”
The Louis Spuhler Award is named after a retired Kane County Sheriff lieutenant, who approached the Batavia Moose Lodge with an idea to recognize the top police officer in the county, but he died before his idea could be put into action.
The banquet is hosted by Batavia Moose Lodge 682 and the Kane County Chiefs of Police Association and held at Riverside Receptions in Geneva.
The Batavia Moose presented a departmental recognition award to the Aurora Police Department for their response to the Henry Pratt Co. shooting on February 15, 2019.
The plaque was inscribed with, “In recognition for your bravery, courage, and response to the shooting at the Henry Pratt Co. on February 15, 2009. Presented by the Batavia Moose Lodge #682 and the Kane County Chiefs of Police Association.”
The event was held at Riverside Receptions in Geneva. Illinois State Police Director Brendan Kelly was the keynote speaker about officer wellness and the need to get help when needed.
Additional nominees for this year included: Geneva Sgt. Eli Rivera; Kane County Sheriff Deputy Luke Weston; West Dundee Sgt. Daniel Haines; St. Charles Officer Jose Jacobo; Bartlett Det. Eric Kistler; Elgin Det. Andrew Houghton; Aurora Officer Ray Lopez and Investigator Jen Hillgoth; Illinois State Police District 2 Sgt. Boguslaw Kramarz; and Illinois State Police District 15 Sgt. Kevin Kelliher.