When the Northern York County Regional Police Department's platoon supervisors submitted their recommendations to its chief for Officer of the Year recipients, there was a slight problem.
The twelve members of the command staff couldn't decide between Officer Matthew Chetaitis and Detective William Haller .
"It was a split decision," said Chief Mark Bentzel .
So instead of selecting one of them to receive the annual award, the department opted to bestow the honor of top cop to both of the equally deserving officers.
In fact, Bentzel said any of the officers in the department could have received the award.
"There's a lot of guys who were just behind" Chetaitis and Haller, the chief said. "It's nice to have two people receive the award."
And the two officers — one from the patrol division and the other from criminal investigations — work in two different aspects of police work.
Detective: Haller, who was assigned to the criminal investigations division four years ago, charged 38 suspects with misdemeanors and 152 with felonies in 2013, according to the department.
Described as "a go-to guy" in the award citation, Haller charged more than 100 suspects with misdemeanors and 350 with felonies over that past three years.
"The number of crimes he's solved and the type of crimes he's solved are outstanding," Bentzel said.
Haller and Chetaitis both joined the department in 2004. Haller was previously named Officer of the Year in 2012.
Patrol officer: Chetaitis, who was recently assigned as the school resource officer in the Spring Grove Area School District, also raked up high numbers in 2013. He was assigned to 847 incidents, investigated 66 traffic crashes, filed 25 felony/misdemeanor charges and 74 summary violations. He also issued 795 traffic citations and gave 73 motorists warning or equipment violations, the department says.
In 2010, Chetaitis and then-Nashville Volunteer Fire Co. Deputy Fire Chief Bradley Dunham delivered a baby boy at the station. The would-be mother was being driven to York Hospital by a friend when she realized her baby wouldn't wait.
When not responding to 911 calls, Bentzel said, Chetaitis utilized his "unobligated" time to follow up on cases and did proactive police work.
"Typically what they are doing is driving through communities, driving through problem areas and walking through parks," the chief said. "He (Chetaitis) just stood out by his supervisors and does what is asked of him."
— Reach Greg Gross at firstname.lastname@example.org.