Go To Search
PrintEmail PageRSS
Burnsville Police Department 2006 Officer of the Year:
Patrick A. Gast
A valued member of the Burnsville Police Department since 2002, Officer Patrick A. Gast has served in the capacity as Patrol Officer, Emergency Action Group–Tactical Team Member, Domestic Abuse Response Team Member, and is currently assigned as an Agent on the Dakota County Drug Task Force. Officer Gast is highly respected among his peers, has demonstrated a consistent, tenacious work ethic that is second to none and is an obvious standout for his relentless pursuit of the “bad guy”.

Distinguished as Burnsville’s 2006 Officer of the Year, Officer Gast is noted for his diligent work above and beyond his responsibilities as a Patrol Officer and Drug Task Force Agent. Whether aggressively investigating a narcotics case or responding to a high-risk tactical team callout, Officer Gast is a consummate professional who resolves the issue at hand. His strong work ethic, positive attitude, and leadership skills are displayed daily and his honesty and integrity is above reproach.

It takes a special breed to work in the capacity of an undercover narcotics investigator. Simply speaking, Officer Gast loves his job, excels at it, and as a result he is very pro-active on the street. Through his self-initiated contacts, Patrick’s case load at the Drug Task Force is at the top; and as a rookie member he has earned the respect of fellow Agents through dedication, hard work and producing good cases as he continues to learn the craft of drug investigations.

This high level of performance has been consistently noted throughout the year through the pre-planning and instruction on the execution of numerous narcotics search warrants. Most recently Officer Gast developed casework and search warrants that ultimately tied two suspects into a string of armed robberies that eventually yielded narcotics, cash and the seizure of several vehicles and residential property – a case that will most likely go to the Federal level. Additionally, a multi-jurisdictional investigation, which consumed over six weeks, resulted in the arrest of several individuals involved in a local cocaine trafficking ring. Much of the investigation took place in our community where controlled buys and other sensitive intelligence was gathered for Federal charges.

As a Tactical Team Member, Officer Gast is able to utilize his specialized training, knowledge and expertise not only in high-risk Emergency Action Group callouts but also during the “normal” course of business. Most notable was an incident on March 27, 2006, involving the report of a family domestic disturbance involving a male and female physically fighting. Upon arrival to the second floor of the complex, Officer Gast observed two men standing outside an open apartment door, and one man was holding a large butcher knife in a threatening manner while yelling at the other man. Blood could be seen on the door frame and also on both men. Officer Gast quickly made a tactical approach, giving verbal commands to drop the knife and ordered both men to the ground. To complicate the scene, a resident from a neighboring apartment entered the area and began yelling profanities. Officer Gast controlled the situation and secured both suspects (father and son) and a second knife without further incident. Deadly force was a distinct possibility in this situation, yet Officer Gast’s sound judgment, self control, and outstanding tactics brought the incident to a successful resolution. As a result of this incident, Officer Gast was awarded the department’s Distinguished Service Commendation.

Through his constant interaction within the community, Officer Gast has developed strong partnerships that are solidified by treating people with respect and dignity. Through his efforts, many victims have been protected from further violence, citizens and merchants have safer streets, and numerous criminals have been incarcerated. Patrick combines the very best of abilities in interview, interrogation, physical evidence, search warrants and courtroom knowledge. While managing these cases, he is always ready to assist fellow officers and investigators when necessary.

Officer Gast’s devotion to law enforcement and the community he serves are well in keeping with the highest standards of this department. His tenacious work ethic and willingness to get involved have been a tremendous influence on those he works with. Congratulations, Patrick!

Help Center