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Culpeper American Legion Post names Dodson top cop

Culpeper American Legion Post 330 named Culpeper Police Sgt. Jeff Dodson its law enforcement officer of the year Thursday afternoon at a ceremony at the post.

Dodson received a cash award.

The detective sergeant was recognized for his work with the Culpeper Law Explorer’s Program. The Law Explorers, sponsored by the Boy Scouts, is comprised of about a dozen boys and girls, who volunteer to work alongside law enforcement and learn about the profession.

As part of the ceremony, the Law Explorers also received a $500 check to help fund field trips, training and uniforms, among other expenses. In addition, the American Legion Post decided to donate $1,000 a year to the local Law Explorer’s, with $250 checks coming quarterly.

Culpeper Police Chief Chris Jenkins, who nominated Dodson for the award, was on hand for the presentation, which recognizes a law enforcement officer from one of three agencies serving the area.

“He spends countless hours, along with several other officers, assisting these young people learn more about law enforcement, its mission and goals to protect their community,” Chief Jenkins wrote in his nomination letter. “Sgt. Dodson works hand-in-hand with these young people forging a relationship with them and their families. He receives nothing in return, except self satisfaction that he may be helping a young person mature.”

By virtue of receiving the local award, Dodson becomes eligible for statewide recognition by the American Legion.

“Sgt. Dodson embodies all that we seek in our officers,” Chief Jenkins said in the nomination letter. “His desire to give back to the community through his work with the Explorers does not go unnoticed. His efforts are appreciated by the department, the Explorers and their families.”

The program has proved its merit as some former local Law Explorers have become police officers in Culpeper.

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