Salem’s Police Officer of the Year for 2015 is an individual whose keen powers of observation and tremendous attention to detail helped keep our citizens safe and secure, even when he wasn’t on the clock.
“This is a tremendous honor for me that is also very humbling,” says Chris Shelor, Salem’s Police Officer of the Year. “I am blessed to work in the city where I was born and raised, and it is an honor to protect the citizens who helped me along the way.”
Back in December of 2015, Senior Police Officer Shelor was on-duty mentoring a trainee officer when they were summoned to the Walmart on West Main Street in reference to a robbery and assault. Shelor investigated the crime and through witness interviews he was able to produce information related to the appearances of the suspects and their vehicles.
Later that morning, just a few hours after finishing his shift and again the next day while he was off duty, Shelor spotted two vehicles that matched the witness statements he had collected at the crime scene. In both instances, he contacted officers in the proper jurisdiction, and Salem and Roanoke City Police were able make arrests, place charges and recover stolen property.
“Chris is very deserving of this prestigious honor, says Mike Crawley, Salem Police Chief. “His character and professionalism exemplify the expectations we have for all of our officers when it comes to putting service before self, and in this case, he did so when he was off-duty.”
Each year the men and women of the Salem Police Department select the “best of the best” from within their own ranks. The current chief and deputy chief are past winners of this award and both understand what an honor it is to be chosen by your peers.
“Having served as Officer Shelor’s direct supervisor in the past, I know firsthand that he is a diligent and hardworking officer who strives to not only represent the Salem Police Department, but the city in a positive and professional manner,” says Derek Weeks, Salem Deputy Chief of Police.
Shelor is a Salem native and a 2000 graduate of Salem High School. He began his law enforcement career working for the Salem Sheriff's Office from 2004-12 as a deputy sheriff. He joined the Salem Police Department in February of 2012 as a patrol officer and was promoted to the rank of Senior Police Officer on July 1, 2015. He is currently assigned to the Forensics Division in the department.
“We are extremely proud to have Chris as part of our organization and we are elated that we are able to recognize him with such a distinguished honor,” says Crawley.
Shelor will be formally honored at the Salem-Roanoke County Chamber of Commerce’s annual dinner and gala on March 18 at the Hotel Roanoke.