In celebration of National Police Week May 9 – 15, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department hosted nearly a dozen special events to respect, honor and remember the men and women of our region who protect and serve.
The events spanned physical feats, recognition ceremonies, and remembrance events for those law enforcement officers who made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty.
Here’s a sampling of this year’s activities:
Bike 2 DC – Ride To Honor
Since 2007, law enforcement officers from across Mecklenburg County have gathered to bicycle 500 miles over four days from Charlotte to Washington, D.C. Along the route, riders are joined by fellow officers and citizens who ride in honor and memory of those who died in the line of duty. The Bike 2 DC ride ends with the Candlelight Vigil at the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington.
“The Challenge” Fitness Competition
A true test of strength and endurance, “The Challenge” honors the officers who lost their lives in the line of duty in 2021. The competition puts teams through their paces with a 2.5-mile run through Uptown Charlotte. Think that sounds easy? Think again: The route is also dotted with stations where teams complete bonus exercises like push-ups, wall squats and burpees.
Additional fitness-inspired Police Week events included the Right Moves for Youth Twilight 5k, in which Recruit Class 191 is shown participating here.
Inaugural CMPD Cornhole Tournament
This year marked the first-ever department-wide cornhole tournament, held at American Legion Memorial Stadium near Uptown Charlotte to spark friendly competition and team-building between departments.
Chief Jennings made it all the way to the semifinals with his friend and tournament partner, former Carolina Panthers Safety Leonard Wheeler.
The Property and Evidence Bureau and Crime Scene Division took home the award for best-decorated cornhole boards, while the team from the Independence Division earned the top spot and trophy as tournament champions.
CMPD Awards Ceremony and Reception
Nearly 150 law enforcement officers, civilian employees and community organizations were honored during this year’s CMPD Awards Ceremony and Reception.
Awards were given for preservation of life, lifesaving, civilian employee service, citizen service, citizen achievement and excellence in policing. Additional honors included Chief’s unit citations, departmental awards, The Purple Heart, The Medal of Merit and the Medal of Valor.
The department honored Officer Mia Goodwin with the Gold Police Cross, awarded posthumously to any CMPD officer killed in the line of duty.
Officer Goodwin lost her life Dec. 22, 2021, shortly before 3:40 a.m. While assisting with traffic direction and control on the scene of an overnight tractor-trailer truck crash, she was killed when a second crash involving two additional tractor-trailer trucks occurred in the area. The crash struck multiple CMPD patrol vehicles and, tragically, Officer Goodwin. Three other officers on the scene were also wounded.
A six-year veteran of the Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department, Officer Goodwin was a member of the 172nd Recruit Class. She was assigned to the University City Division and was the first female officer in department history killed in the line of duty.
Officer Goodwin was a native of Passaic, N.J., and a High Point University (N.C.) graduate. She was 33 years old and came from a family of first responders. She is survived by her parents, her brother and sister, her husband, Brenton Goodwin, a Charlotte firefighter, and their three young children: Gabriella, Greyson and Gia.
Her husband and father accepted the Gold Police Cross on her behalf.
Mecklenburg County Peace Officers Memorial Service
This annual remembrance ceremony and memorial service honored Officer Mia Goodwin, who was killed in the line of duty during a crash just days before Christmas last year.
Also honored were the 39 law enforcement officers from Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department; the Huntersville, Matthews, Davidson, Cornelius and Pineville police departments; and the Mecklenburg County Sheriff’s Office, who made the ultimate sacrifice while serving the Charlotte region between 1804 and 2011.