Ethan Reno’s 911 Call Leads Law Enforcement to Apprehend Intruder Linked to Multiple Crimes
BATH, Maine, February 20, 2015 – Dial 911 in an emergency. It’s a message that we hear over and over again, but in the heat of the moment, during or just after a crime is witnessed, it is often easier said than done. For 11-year-old Ethan Reno of Bath, however, it came as naturally as a conversation with a fellow classmate. A call to the Sagadahoc County Communications Center, handed deftly by first year 911 Dispatcher Alicia Tingley of Bath, led Bath Police and the Sagadahoc County Sheriff’s office to apprehend a suspect of multiple burglaries throughout the area.
Upon entering his home with mother Shannon Moon, Ethan found the suspect hiding in the shower. After an altercation between Ms. Moon and the suspect that led the suspect to flee the residence, Ethan was instructed to call 911 to report the crime. As Moon recovered from the ordeal, Ethan calmly provided 911 Dispatcher Tingley with information about the situation, describing the address of the altercation, providing a visual description of the suspect, and even offering detailed information such as the fact that the intruder smelled of cigarette smoke. As Ethan and 911 Dispatcher Tingley talked, law enforcement were on the trail of the perpetrator. The Bath Police Department and Sagadahoc County Sheriff’s K9 Unit tracked down the suspect, and a short time later both Ethan and Ms. Moon identified his as the man who was hiding in their shower. It was later discovered that a sum of money as well as other property was taken from the residence.
Ethan, a student at the West Bath School, was the focus of a surprise commendation ceremony at his school, attended by Bath Police Chief Michael Field, Sagadahoc County Commissioner Carol Grose and Sheriff Joel Merry, as well as representatives from the Sagadahoc County Communications Center and Emergency Management Agency. Making a special appearance to highlight the importance of calling 911 was national 911 mascot Red-E-Fox. Family and friends of Ethan were also in attendance.
At the school assembly, Chief Field presented Ethan with the 911 For Kids® Heroes Award. 911 For Kids® is the official education program for local, federal and international public safety: dispatch centers, agencies and organizations committed to the sole purpose of teaching children how to save lives and property through the use of 911, the nation’s universal emergency telephone number. “Ethan’s courage and composure under pressure was extraordinary and should be lauded as a shining example of how citizens can help us fight crime,” said Chief Field. “He is a young man mature beyond his years.”
911 Dispatcher Tingley was introduced to Ethan as the voice on the other end of the telephone and presented him with a medal commending his bravery. “Ms. Tingley’s professionalism, poise and technique in tandem with Ethan’s attention to detail made for a perfect case study on how 911 works to save lives and property,” stated Brodie Hinckley, Director of the Sagadahoc County Communications Center.
As the recognition event winded down, Ethan posed for pictures with well-wishers as well as Brix, the K9 who tracked and found the intruder. As he embraced his mother, Ethan was heard as saying, “It feels like this smile is superglued to my face.”