By John Schaffner

The Buckhead Business Association (BBA) presented its Officer of the Quarter award to Atlanta police Zone 2 Sgt. Mike Harty and through him recognized a new plainclothes field investigations team of five officers who made 243 arrests between the unit’s formation Aug. 7 and Sept. 30.

The BBA’s public safety vice president, Charles Quales, presented the award at the group’s quarterly luncheon meeting Oct. 16 at 103 West, along with a similar award to Deputy Corey Henry of the Fulton County Sheriff’s Department and the first-time Fire Rescue Officer of the Quarter award to firefighter Willie Brown of Atlanta Station 3 at Phipps Plaza.

The arrests made by Harty and his team range from burglaries and narcotics to prostitution and quality-of-life crimes. The team has averaged almost five arrests a day in less than two months. Harty was instrumental in picking the team and directing the members to areas where they could make the most impact.

Henry’s off-duty service Sept. 4 as security at Lenox Square mall led to the capture that day of three of four suspects in a snatch-and-grab robbery in Bloomingdale’s. In his attempt to stop a vehicle occupied by the suspects, Henry was struck by the auto twice. After the second time, he fired one shot through the windshield, which apparently struck the driver in the shoulder.

The ensuing police chase ended with the arrest of three of the four suspects at Atlantic Station.

Brown, who was not able to attend the luncheon, was honored for “serving the citizens of Atlanta in the Buckhead area for nearly 27 years.” He has been assigned to Station 26 on Howell Mill Road, Station 39 on Wieuca Road, Station 21 on Roswell Road and, for the past 15 years, to Station 3.

In presenting the award, Quales said, “While not pursuing higher ranks in the department, Willie is considered one of the ‘top-dog veterans’ who continually sets an example and serves as a mentor for all young firefighters.”

In addition to the plaques from the BBA, the honorees receive personal gifts and services from a variety of BBA member companies.