Chief Constable recognises officers in commendations ceremony

Tuesday, 26 November, 2013

POLICE officers and members of the public have been recognised for their courageous actions and commitment to duty by Lancashire Constabulary’s Chief Constable, Steve Finnigan, and the Police and Crime Commissioner for Lancashire, Clive Grunshaw.

Eight police officers and two members of the public received Lancashire Constabulary Bravery Awards during the Chief Constable’s Awards last night at the Ellis Conference Centre at the Police Headquarters in Hutton.

DC Karen Johnson, PC Kate Lacki and Donna Houghton, a former social worker, were awarded for their actions dealing with a man while conducting a joint visit at an address. While there, a man confronted them with a large knife. Their actions allowed the family, including a young girl, to escape the house, and the offender was subsequently imprisoned for fourteen years.

PC Stephen O’Boyle and Vincent McCabe were awarded for their actions in detaining and arresting a man who had stolen a vehicle. Having located the stolen Land Rover Defender, PC O’Boyle’s police car was rammed by the offender, who then ran off followed by PC O’Boyle. Having seen the collision, Vincent McCabe, a security guard at a local factory, tackled and detained the suspect, allowing PC O’Boyle to arrest the offender.

PC Iain Norton was awarded for his actions that saved a woman from an attack by a bull terrier. In order to free the woman, PC Norton gripped the dog around the mouth. Despite being repeatedly bitten, he fought the dog off and saved the woman from further injury.

Sgt Rick Frith, DC Kim Carbutt, PC Richard James and PCSO Daniel Blunt, who was a Special Constable at the time, were awarded for their involvement in two incidents involving the same man. In April 2011, PC James and Special Constable Blunt rescued a man from dangerous scaffolding approximately forty feet up when he attempted to hang himself. A few weeks later, in May 2011, Sgt Frith and DC Carbutt found the same man and an associate threatening to hang themselves from scaffolding approximately fifty feet up, persuaded the man’s associate to come down and saved the man, who had thrown himself from the scaffolding with a cord around his neck.

Sgt Frith and DC Carbutt also received the William Garnett Cup, which is the highest bravery award Lancashire Police awards to its officers, for their actions during the second incident detailed above. This was presented to them by Clive Grunshaw.

Clive Grunshaw also awarded the George Herbert Redman Award. This is presented to those members of the Constabulary who have gone above and beyond the call of duty. This year’s winner was Ch Insp Tracie O’Gara for ‘her relentless engagement and belief in community involvement and partnership working’. As part of her award, Ch Insp O’Gara’s nominated charity, the Cadet Scheme being piloted in her policing division, will receive a cheque for £500.

The inaugural Frances Hendrix Award, in special recognition of women in policing, was awarded to Ch Insp Joanne McHugh. Ch Insp McHugh is one of the senior women officers within Lancashire Constabulary, and was also an important founder member of the Female Senior Detectives network. This exists to identify, support and nurture women to become senior leaders within the organisation.

In addition, forty-one awards were presented to police officers, police staff and members of the public for their outstanding contributions to achieving Lancashire Constabulary’s Ambition; A determination to consistently be the best Police Force in the Country, delivering the best quality policing services.

Mr Finnigan said; “It is always a great pleasure to attend an event where we are able to pay tribute to members of the public, and our own staff.

“The actions we’ve celebrated tonight exemplify all that is best in our communities and in the traditions of Lancashire Constabulary, and they are an example to us all.

Lancashire Police and Crime Commissioner Clive Grunshaw said: "I am delighted to have been able to present the William Garnett Cup to Sgt Frith and DC Carbutt.

"I am always impressed when I see Lancashire's officers in action, but sometimes officers go above and beyond the call of duty, and it is only right we recognise this.”

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