The Sierra Vista Police Department is recognizing Officer Antonio Chavez and awarding him with the Officer of the Year Award and honor of Cochise County’s Top Cop.

It believes he is committed to keeping the community safe and helping those he comes in contact with.

Everyones important and every person I come in contact with, I want to make sure youre okay,” he said. “At the end of the day, Im here to protect and help others.

Officer Chavez’s dedication comes down to reducing risks.

“I just dont like people being at risk, he told KGUN 9.

A Bisbee High School graduate, Officer Chavez left his home state to pursue his dream of pole vaulting in college, but while a way, he realized his mission was to serve his community.

The officer is in his third year with the Sierra Vista Police Department (SVPD). In his first year of field training, he made 978 traffic stops, 60 DUI arrests and answered 756 calls for service.

I like to get criminals off the road,” Chavez said. “The borders right here and theres a lot of crime going through it; and I dont like impaired drivers. So, I try and pull over impaired drivers and get them off the road way ’cause peoples lives are at risk.

His most memorable call he responded to was about a “middle schooler” who had a lot going on and needed someone to talk to. Chavez met the teen at her home and took her to school so she felt safe.

I sat down, I ate breakfast with her at school and made sure she was fine,” Chavez said. “She got her things…she was showing me her drawings and we talked. I made time for her and I made sure she was okay to go to school.

When he’s not on duty, he volunteers as a coach at the Bisbee High School with its wrestling and track and field teams. His commitment to the community and department earned him the title of SVPD’s 2022 Officer of the Year and Cochise County’s Top Cop.

Honestly, I did not think I was going to win based on that. Im so new, but when I won, I was surprised and shocked, he said.

Chavez isn’t letting the two recognition awards get to his head. He wants to continue to become a better officer and mentor.

My goal is to keep doing what Im doing now and to just get better at it,” he said. “I just dont want to stop working hard. Thats what I dont want to do.