Arizona Detective Named 2009 America's Most Wanted All-Star Contest Grand Prize Winner
William Weigt, a detective with the Peoria, AZ, Police Department, has been chosen as the 2009 America's Most Wanted All-Star Contest Grand Prize Winner. The contest, sponsored by Sprint and presented by America's Most Wanted, recognizes the bravery of the nation's First Responders. Weigt, who was paralyzed from the chest down after being shot by a suspect, exemplifies that bravery. A profile of Weigt will be featured on America's Most Wanted Saturday, May 23 (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX.
Detective Weigt was shot in 2005, while conducting a high-risk stop after a drug-related shooting. He awoke three days later to learn that he would be in a wheelchair for the rest of his life. Despite that, he has continued to make a difference in his community, and continues to work as an investigator in the robbery unit. In addition, he's coordinated many fundraising events for local officers who died in the line of duty, and has been a motivational speaker for schools and other organizations. Weigt is also a youth football coach, and brought his team to the national championships in 2007.
Weigt was one of more than 1,000 First Responders nominated by members of the public in the America's Most Wanted All-Star Contest, and was chosen by online voting as one of eight weekly finalists. Then, through votes cast by the public on the America's Most Wanted website (www.amw.com) and via text message from Sprint phones, he was chosen as the Grand Prize winner.
America's Most Wanted host John Walsh broke the news to the detective in a phone call from the show's studio in Washington, DC. "I know you've made a lot of sacrifices since you were shot," Walsh told the winner. "I consider you to be a real hero."
"We congratulate Detective William Weigt on winning the 2009 All-Star Contest, and we're humbled by his heroism and service to the community," said Danny Bowman, president, iDEN Business Unit. "We at Sprint have an obligation to service the public safety community and our frontline responders, and we're proud to sponsor the All-Star Contest for the fifth year."
As the Grand Prize winner, Weigt will receive a check for $10,000 from Sprint and will be the guest of Sprint and John Walsh at the NASCAR SPRINT Cup Series All-Star Race in Charlotte, NC, on May 16. In addition, Weigt's biography will be featured on the AMW website (www.amw.com/allstar), along with profiles of all the First Responders who were nominated for the contest.