Quick thinking PCSO amongst officers commended for dedication to duty

Tuesday, 19 July, 2011

A PSCO whose quick actions saved a cyclist from permanent injury was amongst officers and members of the public presented with commendations for their actions.

Divisional commander commendations are given to police officers and staff who have excelled in their duties when it comes to fighting crime and protecting the public. Residents can also be given these commendations if their actions go towards assisting the police with these aims.

At the recent northern division award ceremony, held at Lancaster police station, PCSO Natalie Johnstone, who works within the Garstang and Over Wyre neighbourhood police team, was presented with a commendation for her calmness when dealing with a road traffic collision between a cyclist and a vehicle.

PCSO Johnstone spent 40 minutes on her knees giving first aid to the unconscious cyclist and supporting his neck while waiting for medical support to arrive. The cyclist suffered three breaks to his neck, a broken collar bone and broken bone in his arm - without PCSO Johnstone's help his injuries could have been far worse. With his permission, PCSO Johnstone now uses the man's crushed cycle helmet to demonstrate the importance of wearing one to youngsters during her road safety presentations.

Chief Superintendent Richard Bayly said: "It is without doubt that PCSO Johnstone's actions and determination greatly reduced the cyclist's risk of further injury or permanent disability. She often stands out for her dedication, commitment and professionalism to the community that she serves."

Sgt Jim Edmonds, Det Sgt Andy Hoyle, Det Sgt Fraser Earnshaw and Sharon Dalton were presented with awards for their work tackling metal and diesel theft. This related to a multi agency operation carried out in 2008 which focused on the illegal activities at a scrap yard in Lancaster. Two people were arrested and £315,000 worth of cash and assets were seized under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

During 2010, the team 2 operation support unit arrested 203 people for a variety of crimes ranging from drug related offences to firearms offences. Sgt James Pinder, PC Matt Harmer, PC Jeanette Wallbank, PC Marc Edwards, PC Chris Topping, PC Matt Thackray and PC Simon Forgham all received commendations for their efforts.

Sgt Sarah Sharman helped to put a persistent abuser of the 999 system before the courts while working as the community beat manager for Heysham and was given an award for her determination when dealing with the offender.

PCSO Laura Swindlehurst and PCSO James Horton work with the Community Safety Team responsible for the reduction of anti-social behaviour in the Lancaster District. The pair received awards for playing an integral part in ensuring that vulnerable individuals receive a high quality of service from the police and their partners.

Sgt Rick Newson was commended for his work in organising a Wyre community bonfire along with other local agencies. Over 3,000 people attended the event, which was a huge success due to Sgt Newson's through planning.

Sgt Nigel Ralphson was praised for the way in which he has developed his road policing team, leading to a consistent reduction in road casualties in the division over the last four years.

Investigative support officer Marion Scott, who works in the public protection unit's child sexual exploitation team, was commended for her tireless work to convict a paedophile who had preyed on young boys for over 10 years.

Julie Tuer, David Grime, Ann Haythornthwaite, Dave Mason and Ian Goodall were presented with awards for being 'unsung heroes' who deliver a consistent and high quality service to support frontline operational policing.

Members of the public Norman Bradshaw and Geoff Bradshaw were presented with awards to honour their quick actions in reporting a burglary that was taking place in Thornton in January. Three men were arrested and pleaded guilty at court.

Ch Supt Richard Bayly said: "It is important to honour those who have gone above and beyond when carrying out their duties -as well as the members of the public who help us when the situation arises. We regularly see acts of bravery and real dedication to the job, all of which goes towards making a safer Lancashire."

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