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Conyers Police officers recognized for service

Special Photo: 
Four Conyers Police officers were recognized by the Conyers City Council last Wednesday for valor and felony apprehension during two armed robberies. From left to right: Officer Keith Kinder, Officer Corey Hambrick, Maj. Scott Freeman and Conyers Police Chief Gene Wilson.

Special Photo: Four Conyers Police officers were recognized by the Conyers City Council last Wednesday for valor and felony apprehension during two armed robberies. From left to right: Officer Keith Kinder, Officer Corey Hambrick, Maj. Scott Freeman and Conyers Police Chief Gene Wilson.

CONYERS -- The city of Conyers honored its public safety officers at the city council meeting last week for service during two high profile armed robberies.

Police Chief Gene Wilson presented medal of valor and felony apprehension awards to Maj. Scott Freeman, Officer Corey Hambrick and Officer Keith Kinder at the meeting. All three were honored for the Georgia's Own Credit Union robbery and Freeman was honored additionally for the SunTrust bank robbery.

In March, Freeman, Hambrick and Kinder were among the public safety officers to respond to reports that Georgia's Own Credit Union had been robbed. After the suspect fled the scene, the three pursued the suspect and eventually apprehended him after firing shots.

"The teamwork of these individuals along with their quick action to prevent a potentially fatal incident reflects highly on the city of Conyers," Wilson said.

Wilson said he was proud of the way the officers reacted to the suspect as he pointed his gun at and attempted to shoot at the officers.

"I'll tell y'all this -- these guys didn't hesitate for a second," he said. "They were on top of that guy as he was waving his gun like something out of the old Wild West."

In May, Freeman responded to a call that SunTrust had been robbed. As Freeman was searching a wooded area, he saw the suspect attempting to hide in the brush. Freeman apprehended the suspect. "Capt. Freeman is to be commended for his actions, taking a highly dangerous suspect into custody, protecting the lives and property of citizens," Wilson said.

In the last five bank robberies in Conyers, the police have apprehended the suspects before they have left the county, Wilson said.

City Manager Tony Lucas said Wilson should also be recognized for his work with the police department. Lucas praised Wilson's work calling him a "hands on" police chief.

"One of the best quotes I've heard -- though maybe not the same verbiage -- is 'Conyers does not have a sissy police chief,'" Lucas said.

The council also commended Wilson for his departmental leadership.

"It's having a hands-on person like Gene, whose probably the best person for the job, letting people know: not in our town," Councilman Vince Evans said.

The council also approved a request for a special-use permit for 1162 West Ave., a request for an alcohol license for Applebee's on Dogwood Drive and for Jennifer Edwards to be appointed to deputy city clerk and fulfill the duties of City Clerk Pat Smith while she is on medical leave.