Security's Falcone Scholarship Winner Headed to Cazenovia College to Pursue
Criminal Justice Degree
Janeen Bligen from City of
Poughkeepsie High School is scholarship recipient
The winner of the 2011 John Falcone Scholarship
Program, Janeen Bligen, will be heading to
Cazenovia College to pursue a degree in Criminal Justice. Ms. Bligen, who will
begin her studies in the fall of 2011, says the additional assistance of the
Vector Security scholarship will help her realize her dreams.
"I will continue to move forward at Cazenovia College" said Bligen. Located in
Central New York, 19 miles southeast of Syracuse, Cazenovia College is an
independent, coeducational college offering baccalaureate programs in the
liberal arts and professional studies. Ms. Bligen continues, stating that, "I am
so blessed and will remember those who have helped me this far. All I can say is
I thank you, and I cannot describe what this means to me."
When Poughkeepsie, NY police officer, John Falcone, responded to a domestic
dispute call on Friday, February 18, 2011, the eighteen-year veteran of the
Poughkeepsie City Police Department would end up giving his life to save a
three-year-old kidnap victim. The selfless act did not go unnoticed by Hammond
Security, the newest branch of Vector Security, which responded by establishing
a scholarship program in the fallen officer's name to help fund the educational
needs of those pursuing careers in law enforcement or criminal justice.
According to Vector's Kim Sears, even small city police forces need to be
prepared to encounter events like this. "Police officers know that domestic
disturbance calls are some of the most dangerous types they can be dispatched
to. Usually victims and assailants are in a highly troubled state of mind, and
are making choices based upon the emotion of the moment. This crime, in
particular, depicts how whole families can be impacted, to include both that of
the child and of the police officer as well."
In this instance, the child's father was holding the three-year-old and waving a
pistol when Officer Falcone arrived on the scene. After wrestling the child free
from his kidnapper, a struggle for the weapon ensued and Officer Falcone was
fatally shot in the head in the exchange. The shooter then committed suicide.
The shooter's estranged wife was found dead in a nearby automobile and police
theorize that the man shot his wife first, kidnapped his son and then met up
with Officer Falcone.
The Hammond/Vector Security Scholarship for Careers in Law Enforcement or
Criminal Justice has been created to support and inspire an exceptional student.
Sears said, "What better way can you keep a hero's memory alive? This program
rewards a man or woman who wants to serve the public as Officer Falcone did."
Vector offered the scholarship through the City of Poughkeepsie High School,
with the inaugural award occurring with the 2011 graduating class.
Cazenovia Colllege also agrees that her future studies at their facility will
honor Officer Falcone's memory. "We look forward to Janeen's arrival on campus
as a Criminal Justice and Homeland Security Studies major, and the education
that Janeen will receive at Cazenovia College will be a fitting living memorial
to Officer Falcone," said Stewart Weisman, professor and director of the
The CJHSS program provides students with the tools they need to enter into a
career in the expanding field of law enforcement, the emerging area of homeland
security, or to pursue a graduate degree or attend law school, and is designed
to educate students to be critical thinkers who communicate effectively, and who
act in an ethical manner.