The Cleveland Police Foundation recognizes the SWAT Team as February 2023’s Police Officers of the Month. Their incredible support for an injured fellow officer exemplifies the true spirit of the thin blue line.
From the first day of the Police Academy, a recruit is taught to always be there for your fellow officers and watch out for each other. No one knows this more than the Cleveland Police SWAT Team, who has been nominated for the Cleveland Police Foundation’s Police Officers of the Month by Third District Captain Tim Maffo-Judd. The following are his own words as to why he made this nomination.
“On June 5, 2020, Officer Jonathan Rodriguez, a member of the Cleveland Police SWAT Team, was hurt on duty and paralyzed by a drunk driver while responding to a SWAT call out. In the years to follow, on September 24, 2022, his brothers in the SWAT Unit proved what being a team is all about. They proved the thin blue line is more than a motto but rather a mindset and at times very tangible.
After John’s accident, the members of the Cleveland Police SWAT Team realized the need to assist John and his family with their new lifestyle. In order to make John more comfortable, his home would need to be altered to allow wheelchair access and assisted living. In addition, John would need funding for surgery which was not covered by insurance. The members of the SWAT Team moved forward, hosting a fundraising event raising more than $165,000 for John and his family.
The members of his unit saw this effort as nothing more than what they were supposed to do for their teammate. Moreover, this is an example of the kind of person and officer John Rodriguez is. The actions and assistance of the members of the SWAT Unit to help an injured brother are a direct reflection of Officer Rodriguez’s humor, compassion, and dedication to law enforcement, his family, and his team.
For these reasons, the Cleveland Police SWAT Team and Officer Rodriguez are a perfect example of the thin blue line and meet the standards of the mission of the Cleveland Police Foundation’s Officer(s) of the Month Award.”
It is because of their compassion and love for a fellow team member and brother that the Cleveland Police Foundation is indeed honored to name the members of the Cleveland Police SWAT Team our Police Officers of the Month for February 2023.
~ Bob Guttu, Cleveland Police Foundation
Nominated by Captain Tim Maffo-Judd
More about the Police Officer of the Month Program . . .