Cregg Jerri, the Fresno man hailed by police as a hero after he stepped in to stop a Starbucks robbery in northwest Fresno in July, was honored Wednesday by an area law enforcement group.
Jerri was among 25 honorees feted by the Fresno and Madera Counties Police Chiefs’ Association awards at the Clovis Memorial District. Fresno Chief Jerry Dyer, who embraced Jerri, said, “He is somebody I deeply admire” for thwarting a robbery attempt. Ryan Michael Flores, 30, was armed with a fake gun and a knife at the coffee shop near Herndon Avenue and Highway 99. Jerri suffered a knife wound near the jugular vein in the attack and Flores reportedly sustained 17 knife wounds as the struggle ended up on the ground.
Dyer said Jerri “made it his lot in life to protect innocent lives at the risk of his own life.”
The chief also scoffed at reports that the family of Flores planned to sue Jerri for using excessive force in subduing the robbery suspect, calling the family’s allegations “smoke and mirrors.”
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Other honorees included longtime Fresno football coach Tony Perry, who stepped in to get help for a student at Gaston Middle School who was planning on harming himself; Christina Orozco, who came to the aid of a man who was shot near Clinton and Blackstone avenues in July; Jimmy Turner, who has a concealed weapons permit and used his firearm to hold two men for police after a shooting near Figarden and Bullard avenues in June; Peter Walsh, a veterinarian who helped save the leg of Fresno County Sheriff’s dog Mikey after he was shot on a SWAT action in July; Jorge and Daniel Martinez, who came to the aid of California Highway Patrol Officer Chris Swamberg to prevent a man from jumping onto a freeway; Isaiah Salas of Coalinga, who rescued a victim from a car fire; and Jeff Finley of Clovis, who jumped into a pool to save a drowning victim.
Fresno and Madera Counties Police Chiefs’ Association award winners
California Highway Patrol
Clovis Police Department
Coalinga Police Department
Fresno County Sheriff-Coroner’s Office
Fresno Police Department
Huron Police Department
Daniel Tamayo Jr.
Parlier Police Department