Corporal Anthony Washington could be found taking pictures at crime scenes or talking to concerned residents about starting a neighborhood watch program. He's equally comfortable searching the Shoals or sitting in an office. With his fingers in so many pots, it's no wonder Washington has been named Deputy of the Year.
"When I think of Anthony, I think of a quote," said Newton County Sheriff Ezell Brown, "that says ‘you manage things and you lead people,' and that saying personifies Anthony Washington. I think that Anthony has perfected that saying over the years in all the assignments he is given. When it comes to being a leader, Anthony stands out."
Brown said that he felt the majority of law enforcement officers receive negative press and often good deeds go unnoticed, and an awards program counteracts that negative with a positive.
Assigned to various departments, including the Office of Professional Standards (where he conducts internal affairs investigations), Community Outreach (which includes Neighborhood Watch), photographer for the NCSO and Public Information Officer, Washington has been with the NCSO for four years.
He started out as a patrol deputy in Newton County, but was previously with the warrants division of the Miami-Dade Sheriff's Office for more than a decade, where he was responsible for making more than 490 arrests. During the end of his career with that department he was assigned to Miami's Liberty City, adjacent to the Overtown area featured on the popular A&E television show "The First 48."
Washington was picked by a group of his peers. The original nomination came from his division commander; once he was chosen as the best representative for the NCSO his name was forwarded to the Elk's Lodge which sponsors the program.
"He is committed and a hard worker and he strives toward professionalism," said Brown. "I'm very grateful for Anthony and for all of the officers here at the NCSO who put aside their own personal gain to select an individual they feel has been significant progress. We all benefit from Anthony."
Washington was humbled by the recognition, according to Brown.
"It's great to be recognized by the citizens, but when it's your peers and everyone you work with, that's a really great feeling."