2021 Distinguished Victim's Rights' Week Award Winners

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Navajo County Distinguished Judicial Service Award

Presiding Judge Dale Nielson

It is with great pleasure that the Navajo County Victim Services Department nominates Presiding Honorable Judge Dale Nielson for the 2021 Distinguished Judicial Victim’s Rights Week Award. The Distinguished Judicial Award recognizes the judges in our community who go above and beyond for victims that they serve.  Each year, Victim Services awards a judge who has demonstrated excellence through enforcing and defending victims and their rights.

Judge Nielson was the presiding judge over a felony murder case resulting in the death of Officer Darrin Reed that resulted in six successful convictions.  As the advocate who accompanied the victims and officers to court numerous times, through hearings, sentencing and post-conviction. I was able to witness firsthand the careful consideration and concern he demonstrated in each case.  A judge’s job is to remain impartial, which can be challenging when overseeing a case like this.  Judge Nielson would take the time to listen to the victims and officers, and carefully consider their statements.  It was appreciated by the victims that they were heard.  He addressed them and their feelings directly when issuing his rulings. Which sometimes when a victim experiences a loss so great, listening is the best thing we can do.

This last year we have faced unprecedented times.  Through all the challenges our court system faced, Judge Nielson has demonstrated integrity and leadership.  He worked hard and remained flexible.  He continued to meet the demands the Justice System required for victims.  Even through those challenges, his commitment to his work and dedication to victims did not waiver.  He continued to demonstrate respect for victims and worked hard to continue to secure justice and safety. 

I can think of several examples of this, he worked with our department to accommodate victims appearing telephonically during the COVID pandemic.  Even with his heavy case load when it wasn’t ideal, he displayed kindness and understanding through his rulings. Which is why I am so pleased to offer him this award. 


Navajo County Distinguished Law Enforcement Officer

Detective Amity Toth

Snowflake Taylor Police Department

It is with great pleasure that the Navajo County Victim Service’s Department awards Detective Amity Toth for the 2021 Distinguished Law Enforcement Officer Award. This award recognizes Officer’s in our community who go above and beyond for Victim’s that they serve.  Each year, Victim Services awards an Officer who has demonstrated excellence through enforcing and defending Victim’s and their Rights.

Amity Toth is a Detective with the Snowflake Taylor Police Department.  She is a member of the Navajo County Multi-Disciplinary Taskforce, Sexual Assault Response Team, and the Domestic Violence Sexual Assault Team Coalition.  As a Detective she has demonstrated compassion for victims and determination to seek Justice for victims of crime.

What stands out mostly about Amity is he humility and hard work.  Amity has taken extra efforts in her cases to leave no stone unturned.  Even when an investigation runs dry, she pushes forward, consulting.  She has a great compassion and understanding for victims and their situation and is always looking for a way to protect victims and their safety.  This can prove difficult for an Officer. 

Amity has at times consulted with partners at length on her cases.  She works hard and considers a victim’s entire situation to help guide her investigation.  She has a calm approachable demeanor that makes her exceptional when working with victims.  They feel safe with her, that not only they can talk to her like a regular person but trust her to always do the right thing.

It is a privilege to have her as part of our teams and I am thrilled to offer this years Distinguished Law Enforcement award to Detective Amity Toth. 

 

 

Navajo County Distinguished Service Award

Bikers Against Child Abuse (BACA)

It is with great pleasure that the Navajo County Victim Service’s Department awards Bikers Against Child Abuse (BACA) for the 2021 Distinguished Victim Service Award. This award recognizes Officer’s in our community who go above and beyond for Victim’s that they serve.  Each year, Victim Services awards a victim service provider in our area who has demonstrated excellence by enforcing and defending Victim’s and their Rights.  BACA was nominated for this award by the Navajo County Family Advocacy Center. Below is the nomination letter:

I am writing this letter to nominate Bikers Against Child Abuse (BACA).  They have been an incredible asset to Navajo County Victim Services Department, Navajo County Family Advocacy Center, the victims we serve, and our community.  They are beyond deserving of this award and recognition.

Their mission is to empower children.  While working as an advocate, I had the opportunity to witness the incredible work they do.  They are committed to ensuring the children they assist feel confident, capable, and safe.  When you ride with them, you feel like part of their family.  It's such an empowering thing to witness and experience.  BACA has empowered the children under their wings and donated their time volunteering in the community.  Recently, the FAC needed assistance in painting the newest addition to their facility.  Members of BACA spent 16 hours of their time helping on this project.  BACA is always looking for ways to lend a hand and be involved. It is with great pleasure I respectfully submit this nomination for BACA for The Victim Service Award.

 

Navajo County Criminal Justice Distinguished Business Award

Bio-One

It is with great pleasure that the Navajo County Victim Services Department awards Bio-One for the 2021 Criminal Justice Distinguished Business Award. This award recognizes businesses in our community who go above and beyond for victims here in Navajo County.  Each year, Victim Services awards a business who has demonstrated excellence supporting crime victims.

Nomination from The Navajo County Family Advocacy Center:

I am writing this letter to nominate Bio-One Crime and Trauma Scene Cleaning for Business of the Year.  They have been an incredible asset to Navajo County Victim Services Department, Navajo County Family Advocacy Center, the victims we serve, and our community.  They are beyond deserving of this award and recognition.

Their motto is "Help First, Business Second," and they live and breathe that every day.  I can't remember when they have said no to our acquisitions for donations, time, or money.  They are always willing to roll up their sleeves and help.  Despite how busy they are with their business in Flagstaff, they are always available for our rural area of Navajo County.  They are a true inspiration for how all companies should be. It is with great pleasure I respectfully submit this nomination for Bio-One Crime and Trauma Scene Cleaning for Business of the Year.

 

Navajo County Criminal Justice Award

Deputy Prosecutor Lee White

It is with great pleasure that the Navajo County Victim Services Department awards Deputy Prosecutor Lee White for the 2021 Criminal Justice Award. This award recognizes the prosecutors in our community who go above and beyond for victims that they serve.  Each year, Victim Services awards a prosecutor who has demonstrated excellence through enforcing and defending victims and their rights.

Lee is an experienced prosecutor, working for decades in Maricopa County before transition here to Navajo County.  She is our specialized child abuse and sex crimes prosecutor.  She also has a lot of experience working on domestic violence cases.  On top of receiving those specialized cases she is also in a regular rotation and manages a heavy case load.  Before transitioning in that role, she was assigned to the homicide taskforce, prosecuting homicide cases. 

Lee’s experience shines through her work.  Not only is she a brilliant prosecutor, but she is really invested in seeking Justice for her victims.  Her case load includes some of the most difficult cases to prosecute, demanding a ton of her time, but a victim would never know this about her.  She makes each victim feel like they are her only case and her one and only priority. 

Lee is fierce and determined.  In one of her child sex abuse cases that was set to go to trial Lee made special arrangements to open the courthouse on the weekend to the victim and her family.  She showed her around the court room, went over questions, took every measure to ensure that victim was as prepared as she could be what would be most likely the scariest moment of her life.

Lee has helped with cases even when she didn’t have to.  One time on a domestic violence case that has been closed, it had come to the victim’s attention that the defendant had received his firearm privileges back early and without notice to her.  This case originally assigned to a former prosecutor and while I was consulting with Lee about the issue, she took it upon herself to help this victim correct this issue.  The Judge overturned that decision as a result and the defendant had to surrender his guns thanks to Lee’s hard work. 

Out of all the cases Lee has worked on, the one that stands out to me the most is her work on the Officer Darrin Reed homicide case.  Lee hit the ground running, working corporately with Detectives from the beginning of this case, leading the investigation.  She made sure the victims were kept in formed every step of the way.  They trusted Lee and were an intracule part of the case.

Lee is more than deserving of this award we are offering her today.  Her presence in Navajo County is truly a blessing for victims and the community.  There isn’t anyone more deserving than her to be recognized for her accomplishments, even though she is humble enough to not need it.   Thank you Lee for the work that you do.  I promise it doesn’t go unnoticed.