Mall Stabbing Spotlight Creates Positive Change For Avon Police Department
AVON -- It's been a whirlwind of a year for members of the Avon Police Department who were thrown into the national spotlight after one of their officers killed an attacker at the Crossroads mall in St. Cloud.
Sunday marks the one year anniversary when Officer Jason Falconer shot and killed 20-year-old Dahir Adan, who dressed as a security guard, ran around the mall armed with two steak knives and stabbed 10 people.
Avon Police Chief Corey Nellis says their department has changed in a positive way since the incident.
"One change from all of this I feel is, with the spotlight we gained, officers may come to work with a little bit more preparedness everyday."
Nellis says his staff goes above and beyond the call of duty every day. He adds Falconer continues to shy away from the spotlight after the events that transpired.
"He has a hard time labeling himself as a hero, even though I label him a hero. I honestly think he looks at it as he was put in a situation to do what he's prepared himself to do."
Nellis says things around the department calmed down pretty quickly after the incident. However, he says to this day other cops are amazed how Falconer handled the situation.
"Law enforcement that watched the video after the incident were just completely astonished by the things he did during that situation."
Falconer was honored as "Officer of the Year" in April by the Minnesota Chiefs of Police Association.
Thirteen different agencies – 126 different people – responded to the Crossroads mall that night.