Local law enforcement officers recognized for acts of heroism
Fifty people attend awards ceremony
– San Luis Obispo County Sheriff Ian Parkinson presented awards Wednesday morning to more than a dozen deputies, retired officers, and citizens for acts of heroism, lifesaving, and meritorious service. The ceremony took place Wednesday morning at the Sheriff’s Department’s Honor Farm on Oklahoma Road near the sheriff’s department headquarters.
Sheriff’s Deputy Cliff Pacas was given a Medal of Valor for his role in protecting the community and his partner, Deputy Nicholas Dreyfus, during the shooting incident involving 26-year-old Mason Lira in Paso Robles in June of 2020. After Lira ambushed the deputies at 10th and Riverside in Paso Robles, shooting Dreyfus in the face, Pacas protected the wounded Dreyfus and dragged him to safety, out of the line of fire. He also returned fire when Lira continued to shoot at the deputies. Ultimately, Lira shot and wounded four officers before he was killed by officers in the Salinas Riverbed after refusing to surrender.
Sheriff Ian Parkinson described Deputy Jacob Henry as the “Michael Phelps” of the award ceremony. The deputy received four Lifesaving Medals for saving several individuals suffering from drug overdoses in the North County.
Among the other officers and citizens to receive awards, Deputy Richard Newell and Property Officer Shawna Schaffer were recognized for 20 years of service. Commander Keith Scott and Detective Clint Cole were honored for 30 years of service.
The sheriff honored citizens Tammy Hall and Doug Morgan for helping law enforcement officers. Receiving the Meritorious Service Award were Correctional Deputy Isidro Ordonez, Detective Clint Cole, Detective Chad Guiton, and Sergeant Dave Mengharajani. Livesaving medals were presented to Detective Trevor Lopes, Deputy Jacob Henry, Deputy Katie Leon, Deputy Glenn Holzer and Deputy Brandan Johnson.
Sheriff Parkinson was helped in the awards ceremony by Undersheriff Jim Voge and Chief Deputy Nix. About fifty people attended the awards ceremony Wednesday, including families of the honored officers and members of the media.
Sheriff Parkinson said the awards demonstrate the remarkable service that sheriff’s deputies provide to the community.