International police chiefs honor Orleans deputy

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 28 October 2016 at 2:06 pm
File photo, Badge of Honor Association: Orleans County Deputy James DeFilipps speaks on June 18 during the Policeman’s Ball in Rochester.

File photo, Badge of Honor Association: Orleans County Deputy James DeFilipps speaks on June 18 during the Policeman’s Ball in Rochester.

San DIEGO, CA. – James DeFilipps, the Orleans County deputy who survived a shootout last year after being shot twice in the abdomen, was honored earlier this month in San Diego by the International Police Chiefs Association/DuPont Kevlar Survivors’ Club.

DeFilipps was chosen as the 2016 Honoree of the Year. He received the award during a luncheon on Oct. 15 during the 123rd International Association of Chiefs of Police Annual Conference and Exposition.

DeFilipps was one of the first on the scene in response to a domestic disturbance call when he noticed the suspect’s vehicle speeding by on the road on March 21, 2015.

DeFilipps was in pursuit when the suspect exited his vehicle and hid from the officers on scene. The suspect then began to shoot at the officers from a nearby wooded area in Clarendon, striking DeFilipps twice in the torso.

DeFilipps fired back, eliminating the threat, and then maintained his position and used the flashlight on his rifle to illuminate the suspect’s location for the other officers. His quick response saved the lives of the other officers at the scene and, thanks to the use of his body armor, DeFilipps sustained non-life-threatening injuries, according to a news release from the International Association of Chiefs of Police.

“The brave actions of Deputy James A. DeFilipps helped save the lives of his fellow officers,” said IACP President, Chief Terrence M. Cunningham of the Wellesley (MA) Police Department. “We are pleased to honor Deputy DeFilipps for being an example to others for wearing his vest.”

Since 1987, IACP has partnered with DuPont to honor those police officers who have survived life-threatening incidents because they were wearing their personal body armor. To-date, more than 3,100 officers who have been saved from death or serious injury by wearing body armor have been honored, with one officer chosen annually as the Honoree of the Year. The award helps to reinforce the use of body armor every day and every shift for officer safety. It also serves as a reminder of the heroic efforts police exhibit while serving their communities.

“Every day, law enforcement officers confront multiple, unpredictable situations that can quickly become life-threatening or disabling,” said Steve LaGanke, Global Marketing Manager, DuPont Protection Solutions. “At DuPont, we are committed to providing advanced materials that help officers, like Deputy DeFilipps, come home safely day after day. We hope that his inspiring story of heroism and survival will help reinforce the fact that wearing personal body armor can mean the difference between life and death.”

DeFilipps, a Holley resident, has worked as a deputy in Orleans County for 13 years after starting his career with the Holley Police Department. The New York State Sheriff’s Association named him the “Deputy of the Year” in 2015.

Return to top