Celebrating the very best of policing
One of the highlights of the past month has undoubtedly been attending the national Police Bravery Awards, organised by the Police Federation of England and Wales. The showcase awards celebrate the many exceptional individuals in policing who go the extra mile to keep the public safe despite encountering some of the most challenging situations imaginable.
There were a huge number of extremely humbling and impressive stories of courage and professionalism heard throughout the night, not least among them the story of Warwickshire officer PC Sara Skinner, who is based at Leamington Spa.
Sara had ‘acid’ thrown in her face when she tried to stop four burglary suspects in Lillington in April last year but, after receiving some brief initial treatment for her injuries, was immediately back at work to ensure that the criminals were apprehended as quickly as possible.
All four suspects were later arrested and subsequently sentenced at court for offences ranging from conspiracy to commit burglary, assault and kidnap. A forensic scientist later identified the liquid poured into the Sara’s face as ammonium hydroxide, which causes burns.
I was both proud and delighted to be there in person to congratulate Sara when she was announced as the extremely worthy winner of the Midlands regional bravery award. Sara's story only serves to emphasise the dedication shown by police officers across the county day in, day out, and we are extremely fortunate to have such high-calibre people keeping our communities safe.
You can read more about Sara's story here
The evening also marked the very first public engagement for the new Home Secretary, Amber Rudd, and I can think of no better introduction to the world of policing for which she now has oversight.
Warwickshire PCC Philip Seccombe with, from left, Midlands Bravery Award winner PC Sara Skinner, Home Secretary Amber Rudd MP and Warwickshire Police Chief Constable Martin Jelley at the Police Bravery Awards 2016.