Other honorees included officers from California, Illinois, Iowa, Florida, Indiana, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Texas and Wisconsin, as well as three FBI agents from Nevada.
“They’ll tell you they’re not heroes. They’ll say they were just doing their jobs,” Obama said. “Today we honor them as TOP COPS because they’re half right.”
He said they signed up knowing “they might be called upon to do some really tough stuff. But I think that makes them more heroic, not less heroic.”
Obama added America owes police officers all the support it can give — including the resources and equipment to do their work. He said that includes enough money to prevent layoffs and what he termed “common sense” gun measures.
Obama’s efforts to enact tighter background checks for gun purchases following last December’s Newtown, Conn., elementary school shooting have so far failed to make headway in the Senate.
Associated Press writer Darlene Superville contributed to this report