OCEAN CITY — An Ocean City Police undercover narcotics agent last week was honored with the Enrique S. Camarena Award presented each year by the Elks Regional Association to a law enforcement officer who best exemplifies the spirit of the award’s namesake.

The Maryland, Delaware and District of Columbia Elks Regional Association honored Ocean City Police Detective First Class Kyle Murray with their Enrique Camarena Award this year. Camarena was a DEA agent kidnapped, tortured and killed in 1985 after breaking open a Mexican drug cartel and has become symbolic of the crusade against illegal drugs in communities all across the nation.

Murray began his career with the OCPD as a seasonal officer for one summer before being hired full time in 2008. He spent two years in the OCPD patrol division before being transferred to the Criminal Investigation Division’s narcotics unit. Murray was instrumental in the success of a federal multi-jurisdictional drug smuggling and distribution case with ties to a Mexican drug cartel.

Murray was able to successfully make numerous undercover hand-to-hand buys of cocaine from a target in the investigation, which resulted in the suspect being indicted on 10 felony drug distribution charges and possession with intent to distribute CDS charges on the state level. As a result, the Delaware State Police narcotics unit was able to execute a search and seizure warrant at a residence in that state, which resulted in three felony arrests, the seizure of over $5,000 in cocaine along with currency and a vehicle.

Closer to home, Murray has made over 150 undercover drug buys since becoming a narcotics investigator and has been the primary detective in 32 felony CDS arrests during 2012 alone. According to OCPD officials, Murray is a team player who was called in over 20 times in 2012 to assist the OCPD patrol division with drug-related investigations. Murray has also worked numerous multi-jurisdictional investigations with the DEA, FBI, ATF, the Maryland State Police, the Worcester County Sheriff’s Office and the U.S. Coast Guard.

In addition to receiving the regional Ocean City recognition, Murray will also represent the 38 Elks Lodges in Maryland, Delaware and D.C. at the Elks National Grand Lodge.

“I’m proud to represent my region,” he said. “I grew up in this area and know all too well the effects of drugs on our community. I am honored to be recognized by the Elks as they are the very citizens we are partnered alongside in the war on drugs. I continue to be enthusiastic about my job and will continue to work as hard as Enrique Camarena did to keep drugs off the streets of Ocean City.”