The Moraine police officer involved in a high-speed pursuit that led to a fatal crash that killed an area Realtor was lauded this spring for his investigatory skills and “attitude and dedication” in being named the city’s top officer.
Matt Barrie’s work last year helped solve a string of robberies, and he volunteered for numerous assignments, according to the nomination that led to his being named the 2017 Moraine Police Division’s Officer of the Year.
“He maintains a high level of proactive activity and completes through investigations,” Moraine Police Chief Craig Richardson told city council in March.
“One particular investigation led to intercept suspects involved in multiple robberies in another jurisdiction,” Richardson added.
Barrie was pursuing a car theft suspect Tuesday evening while southbound on Ohio 741 in Miami Twp. at a high speeds when the cruiser he was driving collided with a northbound Hyundai driven by Mary Taulbee, 57, of Lebanon.
Taulbee was northbound on Ohio 741 near Carnation Road when a car near hers “changed lanes abruptly,” according to the Ohio State Highway Patrol.
The other vehicle hit Taulbee’s car and sent it spinning out of control into the path of the Moraine cruiser, the state patrol said. She died a short time later, authorities said.
Barrie was nominated for the department’s annual top honor by Moraine Deputy Chief Jason Neubauer, Richardson said.
Barrie “has asked for and has welcomed opportunities to have a greater leadership role within our agency,” Richardson told council.
“He has expressed interest in becoming a field training officer and attending leadership academies,” the police chief added. “He has volunteered for a special operations unit and our community outreach team. He has also requested to join the TCSU regional SWAT team.”
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