New SPPD Officer lauded as Public
Safety Officer of the Quarter

March 21, 2014
Santa Paula News

By Peggy Kelly Santa Paula Times A new police officer described by the chief as a “One man wrecking crew” was honored as the Public Safety Officer of the Quarter at the March Good Morning Santa Paula.

Santa Paula Police Officer William “Bill” Pickett was honored as the Public Safety Officer of the Quarter by the Chamber of Commerce, which sponsors the monthly breakfast meeting.

Police Chief Steve McLean introduced Pickett but first noted, “Last week was a good week... in a seven-day period we took 35 people to jail, a third gang members” or associates, and the balance, “Very bad people, including drug dealers.”

McLean said the SPPD, “Is going to take them all to jail and one day you’re going to wake up, realize all the criminals are off the streets, and say ‘I’m safe.’ “ 

The chief noted that before taking the top spot at the SPPD in July, he spent 32 years “with the biggest law enforcement agency in the world,” the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Office.

The organization he added, was not a department that was “reactive,” but rather, “proactive... the LASO did not wait” for people to break the law but rather stopped known offenders  before they could commit offenses.

“Part of the reason the SPPD is making so many arrests is officers like Bill Pickett,” who McLean said is also a LASO veteran with 22 years on the force.

“We have a lot in common,” both serving on the LASO where McLean said he and Pickett knew each other.

Pickett, said McLean, “is a one-man wrecking crew, an expert in gangs and narcotics who has been  right on top of taking them to jail. He’s only been here three or four months,” but McLean said during that time Pickett has distinguished himself as an aggressive crime-fighter.

“It’s no surprise he’s getting officer of the quarter,” said McLean, who noted he and Pickett “have so much in common... he has a very low tolerance for criminals and neither do I.”

McLean, said Pickett, “Knows I’m not much for accepting awards,” but “It is very kind of the community to honor those out there working... with police officers it’s not in our genes,” to seek recognition. 

“We don’t look for praise, we do it because we love it and I love Santa Paula, it’s a nice place to work.”

Pickett also noted he appreciates the efforts of SPPD Lt. Ishmael Cordero, who attended the Good Morning Santa Paula: “Ish has his plateful, he does a great job for us and Chief McLean is also a strong-willed man who has definitely given us direction.”

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