Editor’s Note: Considering all the chaos and civil unrest taking place across the country, it’s refreshing to hear a positive story about our law enforcement partners, and the strong men and women that risk their lives every day to help keep the rest of us safe. While it may be difficult—or impossible to justify the misguided actions of a few, it’s just as important that we remember the overwhelming majority of everyday heroes that serve for all the right reasons. To those out there, we offer our gratitude. Please join us in celebrating one such hero, Jonathan Weise with the San Diego Police Department.
The National Law Enforcement Memorial and Museum is pleased to announce San Diego (CA) Police Department K-9 Officer Jonathan Weise has been named July Officer of the Month.
In the early morning of June 13, police received a call from a woman who believed her two-year-old daughters had been taken by their father, who was suicidal and planning to drive off the Coronado Bridge in San Diego. Officer Weise arrived at the scene to see the suspect drive his truck off Sunset Cliffs and into the Pacific Ocean. His first thought was to jump in after the truck. As other officers arrived at the site, Weise used his 100-foot dog leash to repel down the cliff into the ocean and towards the overturned car, with the help of the officers providing an anchor.
Officer Weise reached the father in the water, who was trying to hold both children while treading water and having difficulty. Weise helped get them to safety on nearby rocks where they could stand. As one child struggled to breathe, he inverted her to help expel water from her lungs, then put her in a bag and used the leash again to hoist her up to the officers above for rescue. Medics then arrived to pull up the other child with their father.
“Jonathan’s use of the 100-foot dog leash to have fellow officers lower him down the 30-foot cliff to reach the father and twin girls is probably the most heroic thing I have seen in my 32 years,” stated David Nesleit, San Diego Chief of Police. “I am in support of Jonathan’s nomination and recognition as the Officer of the Month for July 2020.”
“When I read about K-9 Officer Weise’s quick response to this potentially deadly situation, I could think of no other scenario that was more deserving of our Officer of the Month Award,” said National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund CEO Marcia Ferranto. “Officer Weise’s immediate response, without regard for his own safety, is a true example of the bravery and heroism that defines our nation’s law enforcement officers.”
Located in the nation’s capital, the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial and Museum is a nonprofit organization dedicated to honoring the service and sacrifice of America’s law enforcement officers. The Officer of the Month award program began in 1996 and recognizes federal, state, and local officers who distinguish themselves through exemplary law enforcement service and devotion to duty. The July award was made possible by the sponsorship of the Police Unity Tour.