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This year’s National Police Week, held May 14 – 20, was another for the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department record books. The department hosted special events throughout the week to respect, honor and remember the men and women of our region who protect and serve.

Here are a few of this year’s highlights:

Kickoff: Bike 2 DC – Ride To Honor

Since 2007, law enforcement officers from across Mecklenburg County have gathered to bicycle 500 miles 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 a Candlelight Vigil at the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial and Pipeband Memorial March in Washington.

Monday: “The Challenge” Fitness Competition

A true test of strength and endurance, “The Challenge” honors officers who lost their lives in the line of duty. This year’s competition drew a record 200+ runners and included 10 fitness events like burpees, medicine ball slams and a kettlebell farmer’s carry spaced over a 2.5-mile loop around uptown Charlotte.

Tuesday: Inaugural CMPD Fishing Tournament

More than 45 participants turned out for this year’s inaugural fishing tournament on Lake Wylie, just south of uptown Charlotte. CMPD employees from across the department had the option to fish from the dock or their boats.

The event finished with a barbecue lunch for participants and attendees.

Wednesday: CMPD Awards Ceremony and Reception

This year’s awards ceremony recognized 141 individuals who performed incredible acts of bravery, extraordinary acts of kindness and amazing acts of selflessness.

“The incredible thing,” said CMPD Police Major Brad Koch, “is that, if you ask each of them if what they did was extraordinary, they would all just say that it was ordinary.“

Awards were given for Detective of the Year, Sworn Employee of the Year, Telecommunicator of the Year, Civilian Employee of the Year and more.

Thursday: Second Annual Cornhole Tournament

Independence Division looked to defend their crown, but fell to CMPD Chief Johnny Jennings and his partner, former Carolina Panthers safety Leonard Wheeler, in the semifinals.

Chief Jennings went on to face the undefeated Property and Evidence Bureau in the final round, winning the first game, but losing the second, making the Property team 2023 Cornhole Champions.

Friday: Mecklenburg County Peace Officers Memorial Service

Officers from around Mecklenburg County held a short service at Charlotte’s Fallen Officer Memorial before marching to a nearby church to honor 40 local officers fallen in the line of service.

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