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PRECINCT 4 CAPTAIN HONORED

SEALS.HAYDEN.7.28.14

Captain Mark Seals of the Precinct 4 Constable’s Office was named Montgomery County Employee of the Month for July 2014. Precinct 4 Constable Kenneth “Rowdy” Hayden presented the award to Captain Seals in Commissioners Court Monday morning.

Precinct 4 Justice of the Peace James Metts nominated Captain Seals for the countywide award, but was unable to attend the court session. In Judge Metts’ absence, Constable Hayden read the letter of nomination aloud. The letter cited Captain Seals’ recent role in recovering a drowned teen and his efforts in arresting numerous child predators who used social media to locate and lure in young victims.

After Constable Hayden read the letter, Precinct 4 Commissioner Ed Rinehart spoke up, expressing similar thoughts about how available and dedicated Captain Seals is, and what an asset he is to the community.

Judge Metts said he deeply regretted being unable to attend, but was thankful the committee chose Captain Seals to receive the honor.

 

THE NOMINATION LETTER:

Re: Employee of the Month

July 2, 2014

To Whom It May Concern:

I proudly nominate Captain Mark Seals of the Precinct 4 Constable’s Office for Employee of the Month for July, 2014. Captain Seals has gone far above and beyond his assigned duties and truly exemplifies what it means to “serve and protect.”

On a Wednesday afternoon in late May, an 18-year-old boy went swimming with his girlfriend in the San Jacinto River and was swept under by the current. In the days that followed, crews braved the murky marshy waters and the treacherous snake filled riverbank, searching for the victim. Captain Seals voluntarily participated every day. The following Sunday, when the victim’s body still had not been recovered, Captain Seals joined Judge Spikes and me, along with my cousin and we met early and conducted our own search. Judge Spikes and I were in my cousin’s airboat, and Captain Seals took his own boat. He was the one who actually found the victim. Captain Seals could have slept late that Sunday morning, and he had certainly earned some rest, but he knew there was a grieving family still waiting to say goodbye. Captain Mark Seals consistently puts the needs of others before his own, and does not consider it a burden. He has participated in many search and rescue efforts, often voluntarily interrupting his free time and doing so without complaint or hesitation regardless of the conditions.

Because of Captain Seals, that broken-hearted family was finally able to know for certain their boy’s fate, and to lay him to rest.

Captain Seals has also done something I consider monumental, with little or no recognition, which has saved countless children from becoming victimized by taking child predators off the streets. His quest began when he learned the mother of a local 11-year-old girl had discovered a grown man befriended her daughter and several other girls her age via social media and was sending them messages that were sexual in nature. As the mother tried in vain to get someone to help and do something about the child predator, she took over her child’s social media account and the predator’s messages became more and more alarming, including sending videos of him exposing himself and performing and discussing sex acts. Still, the young, single mother could not get anyone to help. Because the crime was still relatively new compared to almost any other crime, investigation and prosecution were almost completely unchartered territory in Montgomery County.

When Captain Seals first heard about the mother’s plight, he had no experience with online child predators or social media, but he listened to her and he looked at the appalling evidence she and another mother saved. Captain Seals’ plate was already full, but he believed someone needed to stop the child predator and make the victim feel safe again walking home from her nearby school, and playing outside in her yard. It most certainly was not the easy thing to do, but it was the right thing to do.

Captain Seals took it upon himself to become educated regarding law enforcement and child predators. He became obsessed with learning everything he could on the topic so he would have the tools to make a solid case against someone preying upon children in their own homes. He read everything available, he took classes; he networked with other agencies that had experience in that field; and he led an investigation that resulted in charges against the predator in Galveston and Montgomery Counties, as well as notifying an agency in a neighboring state of the predators whereabouts, since that agency had been unsuccessful in tracking him down for prosecution of similar crimes.

Since then, Captain Seals has facilitated the Precinct 4 Constable’s Office becoming part of an area wide Internet Crimes Against Children task force, responsible for the arrest of dozens upon dozens of online child predators in Montgomery and surrounding counties.

Because of Captain Seals, that 11-year-old girl, who is now 13, is no longer afraid to go outside.

He is also a member of the Swift Water Rescue Team, as well as participating in tactical operations to shutdown narcotics traffickers and dealers. Both skills save lives and make a difference in the community.

These only are a few examples of what Captain Seals quietly does on a daily basis, and there is no real way to measure the number of lives Captain Seals has affected in a positive way.

Captain Mark Seals deserves to be named Employee of the Month, and I humbly ask you to do so.

Sincerely,

James Metts

Justice of the Peace, Pct. 4

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