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Norwalk Detective lauded for helping local resident with Autism

By Randy Economy

Heroes are alive and well at the Norwalk Sheriff’s Station, and on Tuesday leaders from the Medic Alert Foundation recognized Detective Mark Christiansen for coming to the aid of a local Norwalk resident who recently found himself in a dire situation.

Flanked by Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca, Norwalk Mayor Cherie Kelley, and several of his colleagues, Detective Christiansen was presented with a Extraordinary Meritorious Service Award from Tom Levin, a member of the Board of Directors of MedicAlert.

Christiansen was all smiles standing on the steps of the Norwalk Sheriff’s Station Headquarters and was lauded for caring for an adult MedicAlert member with autism who had wandered away from his home, located not too far from where the ceremony took place.

“Detective Christiansen’s recognition and response to the member’s MedicAlert ID enabled him to instantly access the member’s medical history and to identify the patient’s needs. Medic Alert’s emergency response team worked with Detective Christiansen to ensure that the member was safely returned home,” Sheriff Baca said during the presentation.

The Medic Alert Foundation Extraordinary Meritorious Service Award honors first responders who have recognized the MedicAlert medical ID and contacted Medic Alert’s 24/7 Live Emergency Response Service Center to access vital medical and identification information to provide the best care and services for members of MedicAlert Foundation.

Detective Christiansen has described his actions after receiving a call about a man wandering the campus of Norwalk High School:

“School security advised me that the individual was cooperative, however unable to speak. I initially tried to get him to write down his name or any information regarding who he was. He was unable to perform this task either,” explains Detective Christiansen.

“While attempting to communicate with the individual, I noticed his Medic Alert Bracelet. I called the number and provided the information to the operator. The operator provided me with an address for a nursing facility. The nursing staff stated he had never walked away from the facility before and were pleased we found him unharmed.”

Detective Mark Christiansen has served as Deputy Sheriff for the past 15 years and is presently assigned to the Norwalk Station where he has been for the last 12 years. Detective Christiansen’s duties include the investigation of crimes ranging from theft, identify theft, burglary, robbery, assaults and attempted murder. He has been involved in the arrests of over 400 people in the Los Angeles County area for related crimes.

He told Los Cerritos Community Newspaper Group in an interview the importance of “proper training” and “being able to understand how autism affects members of our community.”

Baca was beaming about the accomplishments of Christiansen. “This all ended up well and positive for everyone, and we have Dep. Christiansen to thank for his efforts.”

Visit Your City TV for a look at this press event by Los Cerritos Community Newspaper.




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2 Responses to Norwalk Detective lauded for helping local resident with Autism

  1. Pingback: Arrest made in death of 17-month old La Mirada toddler | Los Cerritos Newspaper Group/Hews Media Group

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