Cops: Officer Justin Rivera is GPD officer of the month

riveraA Greenwich police officer’s contributions to a federal counterfeiting investigation have earned him recognition as the officer of the month for May 2014. Officer Justin Rivera’s traffic stop of a suspicious vehicle turned up marijuana and 11 forged $100 bills, now believed to be the product of a counterfeiting operation extending through metro New York.

“P/O Rivera’s recognition of the vehicle, his initiative, and his sound investigative skills demonstrate a  persistent industry in the performance of his duties, and is in keeping with the ideals of the police profession,” police said  in a statement released this week.

According to police, Rivera recognized a  vehicle that police had previously deemed suspicious. At that time, police were unable to establish probable cause and did not make any arrests, but the incident spurred Rivera to take up “impromptu surveillance” of the vehicle. Noting the smell of marijuana, Rivera made the stop after he saw the car’s occupants attempting to hide something under their seats.

The stop yielded both drugs and counterfeit bills, with the U.S. Secret Service taking interest to the latter, tracing it as part of a trend of similar forged notes passing through the area.

Justin Pottle