DA Early Honors Webster Officers Who Saved House Fire Victims

October 25, 2021

For Immediate Release

Contact: Casey Shea 508-368-7229

WEBSTER– Worcester County District Attorney Joseph D. Early Jr. today honored four Webster police officers for saving residents from a house fire.

Sgt. Joseph Reed, Officer Jacek Ochocki, Officer Francheska Cedeno, and Officer Thomas Motyka were presented with the District Attorney’s Team Excellence and Merit — TEAM — Award, which recognizes outstanding service by those in public safety.

“A single cigarette sparked a fire that threatened multiple homes and lives,” Mr. Early said. “Despite having no protective gear, these four officers didn’t hesitate to rush into the buildings and ensure the safety of all residents. Lives surely would have been lost if it were not for their bravery.”

While on patrol at 4:42 a.m., Sgt. Reed reported a house fire on Robinson Street. The triple decker home was engulfed in flames. With high winds, the nearby home was in danger of catching fire. Acting quickly, Reed, Ochocki, Cedeno, and Motyka ran into both houses, waking and evacuating all occupants.

“I am proud of the actions of these officers,” said Webster Police Department Chief Michael Shaw. “They are a fine example of the caliber of Officer the Webster Police Department has in its employ. I am honored to be their Chief.”

All residents made it to safety and the Webster, Dudley, Southbridge, Douglas and Sutton Fire Departments responded to combat the flames.

Mr. Early created the TEAM Award in 2019 to recognize public safety employees who go above and beyond the call of duty. Contact the Worcester County District Attorney’s Office at (508) 755-8601 to nominate someone for this award.

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