City News

Posted on: December 6, 2017

Seaside Heroes Receive Award of Merit

Seaside police station details-65

Seaside Police Officers Gabe Anderson, Matthew Blackmon, David Rice, Seaside Police Sergeant Jorge Enriquez and (at the time) Seaside PD Matthew Blackmon, and Monterey Police Sergeant Jerimiah Ruttschow will be honored tonight by the Monterey County Peace Officers’ Association (MCPOA) with the Award of Merit for meritorius and live saving acts on November 7, 2017.

Seaside Public Safety Respond to Robbery and Save Suspect From Plunging To His Death

On November 7, 2016, Seaside Police Officers received information of a male brandishing a knife at the Howard Johnson Motel in the 1800 block of Fremont Blvd. Officers searched for the man but were unable to locate him. Several hours later, at approximately 7:40 p.m., officers were dispatched to a call of a man with a knife who had attempted to commit a robbery and stab a person near the Embassy Suites Hotel.

As officers were investigating this incident, the officers received another call of a man hanging outside of the 4th story railing of the Holiday Inn Express in Seaside. The man fit the description of the suspect who had brandished the knife earlier in the day, and who had attempted the armed robbery with a knife.

Officers from the Seaside Police Department and Monterey Police Departments responded, along with personnel from the Sand City Police Department, Seaside Fire Department, and AMR.
Seaside Police Officers and Monterey Police Officers responded to the fourth story and found the man out on a ledge, making irrational statements.

The officers verbally engaged the suspect and were able to talk the suspect off the ledge and onto the walkway; however the suspect would not comply with any other directions and requests by the officers. After more than twenty minutes of dialog, the suspect turned and jumped head first over the railing.

As the suspect was falling, Seaside Officer Gabe Anderson reached over the railing and was able to grab onto one of the suspects legs. This was done without regard for his own safety. Officers Matthew Blackmon, David Rice, Sergeant Enriquez and Sergeant Ruttschow quickly grasped onto the suspect as he dangled from the balcony. Collectively, they were able to pull him back onto the ledge and take him into custody.

The suspect continued to struggle, kick and fight with the officers, even as the officers were pulling the suspect to safety, and attempted to flee. The suspect was eventually subdued with the use of the WRAP restraint, arrested, charged with Attempted Robbery, Brandishing a Knife, and Battery on a Peace Officer, and lodged at the Monterey County Jail.
It was later determined that the suspect had an extensive history of violence and drug related charges.

Incidents such as these are a team effort. However, those officers who were directly involved with saving the suspect, selflessly and courageously placed themselves in harms-way, and demonstrated exceptional judgment, and immense skills and speed to keep the suspect from plunging to his death. Those officers deserve special thanks and recognition for their dedication, courage and selfless actions.

(Taken from November 12, 2016  Press Release)

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