LITTLE ROCK —An Arkansas State Police trooper was honored Thursday as 2016 Trooper of the Year for actions in Crawford County last year that the agency said saved motorists’ lives.
Cpl. Roy Moomey, 42, a seven-year veteran of the Arkansas State Police Highway Patrol Division assigned to Troop H, received the award during the annual Arkansas State Police Honors and Award Luncheon Ceremony in Little Rock.
Moomey also received the agency’s Lifesaving Award and Gold Shield Award. The Gold Shield Award is presented to troopers or civilian staff who suffer permanent disfigurement, permanent impairment of health or extremely serious physical injury in the line of duty.
In the early morning hours of Aug. 8, Moomey responded to a call about a vehicle traveling west at a high rate of speed on eastbound Interstate 40 in Crawford County. State police said Moomey maneuvered his patrol car into the lane of the oncoming vehicle and in the final seconds before impact successfully prevented two vehicles and their occupants from being struck by the wrong-way driver, Matthew Choate, 24, of Fort Smith.
Choate was killed in the crash.
Moomey received life-threatening injuries in the collision. He was hospitalized for weeks and underwent multiple surgical procedures, and he continues to go through rehabilitation, the agency said.
Lifesaving Awards also were presented Thursday to:
— Trooper Ben Ibarra, assigned to Highway Patrol Division Troop H, for his March 9, 2016, lifesaving measures given to a woman who was choking on food at an Ozark restaurant.
— Trooper Kyle Bost, assigned to Highway Patrol Division Troop A, for his July 13 lifesaving measures given to a shooting victim at a Little Rock drive-in restaurant.
— Trooper Paul Robson, assigned to Highway Patrol Division Troop I, for his July 31 lifesaving measures when a Searcy County man was wounded by fragments of a gun that exploded.
The agency’s highest award for a civilian employee went to John Scarlett, a 10-year veteran staff employee assigned to the Arkansas State Police Used Motor Vehicle Dealers Licensing Section.
Scarlett was recognized for his investigative work assisting special agents of the Arkansas State Police Criminal Investigation Division.
Ben Alstadt, a 13-year veteran employee assigned to the Arkansas State Police Information Technology Section, received a plaque in recognition of his work in the installation and upgrade of the department’s telecommunications land line system. His duties include operations within the Arkansas State Police data network systems and cyber security.
Distinguished Service Awards, which honor non-law enforcement officers or officers with other law enforcement agencies, were presented to:
— Angela Mull, for providing aid in the same incident for which Bost was honored.
— Leon Harris and Kenneth Jones, for coming to the aid of Trooper Travis Eddleman on April 8, 2016, when a wanted fugitive resisted arrest and tried to get Eddleman’s gun after a traffic stop in Searcy.
— Kevin Gray, Ronnie Lummus and Jonesboro police officer Anthony Zaffarano, for freeing a man from a burning truck seconds before the vehicle was engulfed in flames on Aug. 2.