Police Officer Kyle Kennedy congratulates Dominick Rogers for a job well done. The Pilot / Lorna Rodriguez
Dominick Rogers was headed toward Fred Meyer one day when he noticed a man with a friend’s stolen bicycle. Rogers promptly followed the man into Fred Meyer and out again.
He saw the man by the bike rack near the electronics section, walked up to him and had a casual conversation with him.
In the meantime, the friend’s mom called police. Until they arrived, he stayed on scene and kept an eye on the man.
Rogers is a seventh grader at Azalea Middle School.
For his efforts, Rogers was recently awarded the Youth Citizens Patrol Award by Brookings Police Officer Kyle Kennedy. The award is “given when individuals go above and beyond.”
“Dominick helped locate a criminal suspect that had stolen a bike,” Kennedy said. “His statement essentially allowed us to wrap up the case. He provided the linchpin in the investigation.
“If he hadn’t have done that, we might have located the stolen property but not the suspect because the suspect is relatively new to the area.”
In Kennedy’s four years with the police department, this is the first time someone has received the award.
“It just makes me feel good,” he said of receiving the award.
He went to all that effort “because it’s one of my friend’s bikes. She asked me to look for it, so I did.”
The bike is a BMX style, and is valued at around $400. Attempts to contact the girl were unsuccessful.
The suspect, Kurt Eskildsen, 21, is a Brookings transient resident who has had numerous contacts with law enforcement, according to Kennedy.
He was cited for theft and minor in possession of alcohol. Eskildsen was 20 when he was charged.
The case is still being adjudicated, but there is a warrant out for his arrest because he did not show up to court this past week.
Rogers said he wasn’t scared, although he did admit he was a little nervous while waiting for police to arrive; he thought the suspect might know he had made phone calls.
“We’re not asking youth to tackle criminals or crime. But to go the extra step, follow a suspect, get a statement and provide it to us, that’s rare, even in adults,” Kennedy said. “He essentially did our job for us.”