McNeil receives chiefs’ association commendation

camie mcneil award

By Traci Chapman

Mustang police detective Camie McNeil last week received a commendation from Oklahoma Association of Chiefs of Police.

Chief Chuck Foley was on hand when the veteran officer received the award. McNeil has been with Mustang Police Department for 19 years. McNeil was acknowledged for her long service and significant contributions to the Mustang police force. She was one of six officers across the state to receive the commendation, Foley said.

“Women in law enforcement is kind of standard now, but 20 years ago it wasn’t and she was a real trailblazer,” Foley said Wednesday. “She’s certainly established herself as an integral part of Mustang Police Department.

“It’s truly a standout award,” the chief said.

It was the latest in a series of awards for McNeil. She was recently named American Legion Post 353’s Outstanding Police Officer of 2014, nominated by her boss, who said McNeil was a credit to both the department and the community.

“Camie consistently maintains empathy for crime victims while methodically investigating offenses of all types,” Foley said at that time. “McNeil has traditionally been the primary investigator in crimes against children and sexual assault victims.”

In addition to her case duties, McNeil has taken a lead role in communication relations for the department, including Shop with a Cop, begun in 2011 as a partnership with Yukon Police Department and last year expanded to include Mustang students. She also was assigned the task of meeting with local media about cases, arrests and other police activity, Foley said.

McNeil’s reputation spread in 2011 during the high profile case involving the death of former Mustang City Councilman and Nichols Hills Fire Chief Keith Bryan. Not only was McNeil appointed lead detective in an unusual case for the city, but she also dealt with a deluge of both local and national media. She completed those duties with professionalism and honor, despite having known both the victim and his now-convicted killer, Rebecca Bryan.

“Camie’s tasks included coordination of investigative and forensic tasks and conducting interviews of witnesses and involved persons over an extended period of time with OSBI team members, who had joined the investigation at its inception,” Foley said. “Detective McNeil was not only willing to accept this challenge but overcame all obstacles based on the eventual, successful outcome of the case.”

It was a case where McNeil was involved for years, from the night of the crime until last year, as the trial and sentencing continued and media scrutiny remained, Foley said. McNeil was the only detective who could respond to the scene, the chief said.

Rebecca Bryan’s conviction was due in great part to McNeil’s diligence, Canadian County District Attorney Michael Fields said.

“Camie McNeil’s work in the Bryan case exemplified professionalism, diligence and a willingness to go above and beyond the call of duty,” Fields stated via email. “The citizens of Mustang and the state of Oklahoma are well served by her desire to seek the truth and pursue justice.”

While that case may be the most publicized of her career, it was her work every day that set her apart, Foley said.

“Camie is someone who has always done our city and our department proud,” Foley said. “Mustang is lucky to have someone of her caliber.”