Det. Jeanette Meers, a 21-year veteran at the Manhattan Beach Police Department, was recognized Tuesday as the 2013 Officer of the Year.
Meers, who for the past four years has served as a detective in the forgery and fraud unit, heads cases involving identity fraud, tax fraud and credit card schemes, a growing sector of crime in the digital age.
“It’s just a huge, huge honor,” she said. “I don’t even know what else to say. It’s humbling, too. It takes a lot of people on my cases–I’m not just the only one. It takes the whole bureau.”
Prior to joining the detective bureau, Meers served in patrol for 15 years, during which she became Manhattan Beach’s first female motorcycle officer. She subsequently worked in field training for five years and served on the SWAT team for four years.
At the City Council meeting Tuesday, Mayor David Lesser honored the detective with a certificate of commendation on behalf of the entire community. Chief of Police Eve Irvine commended Meers for her aptitude and humility in serving the community.
“She’s so diligent and so compassionate in what she does,” Irvine said. “She contacts every one of her victims, she does very thorough cases, and she’s probably one of the best detectives I’ve ever worked with. She represents us so well.”
The Officer of the Year is selected annually by his or her peers, including civilian personnel, professional staff and supervisors.
Prior to joining MBPD in 1982, Meers served as a reserve officer for the Orange County Sheriff’s Department. She began her career in law enforcement as a civilian officer at the Seal Beach Police Department.
“We had some pretty big cases in the bureau this year and anything that has my name attached to it took the entire department and sometimes most of the South Bay agencies and a few federal and county agencies,” Meers said. “It was a privilege to do all that and get recognized.”