RNJ News Department

Life Saving, Meritorious Service & Exceptional Service Awards Given to Mansfield Twp. Officers

MANSFIELD TWP, NJ (Warren County) -At the July 12, 2017 Mansfield Township Committee meeting the following awards were presented by Police Commissioner Shirley Kocher, Mayor Joe Watters, Chief of Police Michael Reilly and Mansfield Rescue Squad President Terry Clancy. We are extremely proud of all of you and are honored to have you serving our community! Congratulations!

Life Saving Award:

On April 27, 2017 at 2:08pm Detective Sergeant J. Michael MacDonough and Detective Joseph Mathews were at police headquarters when they heard patrol officers being dispatched to a residence for a fifty-eight year old male who was having difficulty breathing. Within minutes they arrived at the residence and found a family member rendering aid to a male who was not breathing and did not have a pulse. The detectives performed chest compressions and rescue breathing while attaching a department issued defibrillator. Multiple shocks were administered between rounds of CPR. The Mansfield Township Emergency Squad soon arrived along with Hunterdon Medical Center Paramedics and patient care was turned over to them. Mansfield EMT’s Rebecca Southard and Mark Villas Jr. along with Paramedics Andy Ibanez and William Lewis continued life saving measures while in route to the hospital resulting in the patient regaining a pulse and breathing on his own.

Detective Sergeant J. Michael MacDonough, Detective Joseph Mathews, EMT’s Rebecca Southard and Mark Villas Jr., and Paramedics Andy Ibanez and William Lewis are being presented with the Life Saving Award for an act performed in the line of duty resulting in the saving of a life.

Meritorious Service:

On June 4, 2017 at 4:45 pm Patrolman Michael Madonna responded to a residence on the report of a dispute in progress. Dispatch advised responding officers a twenty-eight year old male was breaking items and attacking a family member. When he arrived, he encountered a male standing at the bottom of a staircase near a samurai sword. The male told officers to leave his residence and said he didn’t want their help. He indicated he was depressed and did not want to live anymore. He then picked up the samurai sword and refused to follow commands to put it down. He told officers he wanted them to shoot him. Patrolman Madonna engaged the male in conversation regarding the issues he was experiencing in his life and after twenty-five to thirty minutes he became less agitated and dropped the sword. He was then transported to the hospital for a psychological evaluation and treatment. Through Patrolman Madonna’s actions he was able to prevent the male from taking his own life or forcing officers to use deadly force.

Patrolman Michael Madonna is awarded the Meritorious Service Award for accomplishing an act under adverse conditions with some degree of hazard to life and limb to the officer and where serious injury to a third party is prevented.

Exceptional Service:

On January 1, 2016 Patrolman Gregory Zytko was assigned to our newly formed K9 Unit. He and his new partner, K9 Jax, spent the following six months completing a rigorous training program which gave them the foundation of skills necessary to succeed as a K9 Unit team.


During their first year together, Patrolman Zytko and K9 Jax were involved in 53 narcotics searches and 17 K9 tracks resulting in 30 arrests and the removal of a substantial amount of dangerous drugs from our community.

Patrolman Zytko and K9 Jax have continued to train and perform the functions essential to the Community Policing efforts of the Mansfield Township Police Department by providing K9 demonstrations throughout the year at community events including Police Day at the Mansfield Elementary School.

The Mansfield Township Police Department K9 Unit has exceeded all expectations and this is undoubtedly due to the dedication and determination of Patrolman Zytko and K9 Jax. Through their work ethic and exemplary skills, they are able to help keep Mansfield Township a safe place to live, work, and travel through.

For their exemplary and exceptional efforts along with their investigative techniques we cite Patrolman Gregory Zytko and K9 Jax and commend them and bestow upon them the Exceptional Service Medal on behalf of the citizens of the Township of Mansfield.