PROVIDENCE — Rhode Island Attorney General Peter F. Kilmartin recently honored several individuals and organizations at the 8th annual Justice Awards, including East Providence Police Officer Thomas Aguiar.
The Justice Awards are given to individuals and community organizations in recognition of an extraordinary commitment to justice and the community, and are presented in honor of the eight previous Attorneys General.
“It is an honor to recognize those, like Officer Aguiar, who are committed to protecting our community and our most treasured and most vulnerable population,” said Attorney General Kilmartin. “Elder abuse can be difficult to recognize and the victim often unwilling or unable to report it. Officer Aguiar has dedicated his career to protecting our elderly and is teaching a new generation of police officers how to recognize and investigate potential signs of elder abuse that may be present during routine patrol calls, but have often gone unrecognized in the past.”
East Providence Police Officer Thomas Aguiar serves as a Community Policing Officer and a Senior Citizens Police Advocate, where he works closely with the Office of Attorney General Elder Abuse Unit on various elder abuse investigations. Officer Aguiar’s knowledge, experience and dedication to the elder community are recognized statewide.
Due in great part to his effort, in 2011 elder abuse training was added to the curriculum at the Rhode Island Municipal and State Police Academies, where Officer Aguiar serves as one of the principal trainers and curriculum developers.
For his service to the law and for serving and protecting one of our most vulnerable populations, Officer Aguiar was presented with the Attorney General James O’Neil Justice Award for Senior Protection.
“It’s a great honor to receive this award, especially to be recognized with Officer Steve Lombardi of the Warwick Police Department,” Officer Aguiar said. “Steve and I went through the police academy together, and I really consider him a mentor on the subject.”
Officer Lombardi, like Officer Aguiar, also received the O’Neil Justice Award. Both were nominated by the Elder Abuse Unit of the Office of Attorney General.