Courage and dedication rewarded

1 November 2011

Police officers, police staff and members of the public have received recognition for their bravery and dedication at commendation ceremonies held at North Yorkshire Police headquarters.

The ceremonies were hosted by Director of Crime Directorate, Chief Superintendent Karnail Dulku, Acting Director of Response and Reassurance, Chief Superintendent Ken McIntosh and Director of Specialist Operations, Temporary Chief Superintendent Andy McMillan.

Crime Directorate:

North Yorkshire Police acknowledged the Judge’s commendation which was awarded by His Honour Judge Peter Collier QC to the team who investigated and brought to justice Ricky Gelardo for the murder of Alan Atkin in Scarborough in April 2010.

The team members were: Detective Superintendent Alan Carey, Detective Inspectors Geoff Carey and Paul Sweeting, Detective Sergeants Andy Dudman, Angie Carey and Dee Collinson, Detective Constables Adam Normanton, Andy Hall, JezzPratt and Ray Roberts, Steve Walls of the Major Crime Team; Paul Lammond, Karen Skippings, Peter Berry and Alison Jones from the Fingerprints Bureau; Martin Blee, Stephen Upton of Crime Scene Investigation,  Michelle Walton from the Forensic Science Service and Abi Bateson and Jenni Kilvington from the Crown Prosecution Service.

After the verdict and sentence was delivered, the Judge commented: “Mr Atkin’s body was not found for five days, by which time the offender had taken steps to destroy the bloodstained clothing and trainers. I would like to praise the police and prosecution team, despite the challenges they faced, the different agencies have worked together and put together a case which the jury found convincing and I would like to take this opportunity to commend them.”

On 27 October 2010 at Leeds Crown Court the offender was given a mandatory life sentence with a minimum term of 17 years.

Teresa Bentley, of the force’s Financial Investigation Unit, received two Director’s Commendations for investigations into the financial backgrounds of a man running a brothel and a man found guilty of Conspiracy to Supply Class A Drugs. At the time the confiscation orders totalling £622,306were the largest in the force’s history

At York Crown Court on 27 April 2009, the brothel keeper pleaded guilty to the charges.

On 5 March 2009, the drug dealer was found guilty at York Crown Court of Conspiracy to Supply Class A Drugs and later sentenced to 10 years’imprisonment.

Detective Chief Superintendent Karnail Dulku said: “Teresa’s professionalism and detailed enquiries not only brought two offenders before the courts but has enhanced the reputation of the force nationally.”

Detective Constable Fionna McEwan, of York CID, was awarded a Director’s Commendation for her investigation of distraction burglaries across North Yorkshire and the north of England.

In Autumn 2010, a series of distraction burglaries was identified across the region. DC McEwan was already investigating a series of similar offences in York and her enquiries had been pivotal in linking an organised team of criminals to specific offences. She ensured that all victims were properly treated and that the maximum evidence was obtained for the offences committed through North Yorkshire. She established and maintained an excellent and professional relationship with the senior investigating officer leading the region-wide investigation.

In June 2011 both defendants pleaded guilty to conspiring to burgle and received sentences of five and six years’ imprisonment.

Detective Chief Superintendent Karnail Dulku said: ”DC McEwan displayed first class skills, influencing colleagues to provide work to the required standard. Her efforts resulted in the submission of evidence files to build a nationwide conspiracy case against the principal offenders.”

Detective Constable Sarah Bullock, of York CID, received a Director’s Commendation for an investigation into a serious assault in Byram near Selby in December 2010.

The victim had been subjected to an attack that involved multiple fractures and severe burns. DC Bullock led the investigation into the attack and her actions throughout the investigation and subsequent criminal justice process, in particular around victim care and management, ensured the two defendants were convicted and sentenced to 14 years’ imprisonment in total 

DC Bullock was formally thanked by Judge Steven Ashurst who noted her efforts in securing the conviction and praised her for her efforts in bringing the case to justice and ensuring that the victim, who had left the UK, attended court.

Police Constable Alex Parker, of the Scarborough Safer Neighbourhood Team, received a Director’s Commendation for his professionalism and thorough handling of the investigation into an allegation of domestic rape at Scarborough which occurred over a four -year period

PC Parker was appointed to investigate the allegation and through his enquiries, further offences were identified. The defendant denied all the offences and harassed the victim whilst on bail. PC Parker ensured the victim was fully supported throughout the enquiry by putting  safety measures in place and that multi-agency support was provided for the victim through the Domestic Abuse Services and the Independent Domestic Violence Advisor. Forensic lines of enquiries were pursued for historical offences and these subsequently proved vital in obtaining a successful prosecution.

Detective Chief Superintendent Karnail Dulku said: “PC Parker’s support ensured the victim felt safe and confident through out and was able to give evidence at Crown Court.

“The defendant was subsequently found guilty of six counts of rape and three counts of sexual assault and sentenced to 16 years’ imprisonment.”

Response and Reassurance Directorate:

Police Sergeant Jonathan Naughton and Police Constable Philip Low, of the York Safer Neighbourhood Team, received Director’s Commendations for their prompt and decisive actions which saved the life of a 17-year-old youth on 5 April 2011.

PS Naughton and PC Low were on routine foot patrol on Goodramgate, York City centre, when the youth whose tracksuit trousers were soaked in blood after an accidental injury caused by sharp object. They realised that he had severed his femoral artery so they immediately called for medical assistance while administering first aid until the ambulance service arrived. The youth made a full recovery following treatment in hospital. The youth and his father later expressed their thanks to both officers for their actions.

Superintendent Ken McIntosh said: “I have no doubt that the vigilance of PS Naughton and PC Low and the first aid  they gave at the scene were key to the youth’s survival. 

Police Constable Pete McCreedy, of the Selby Safer Neighbourhood Team, was awarded a Director’s Commendation for his determination, dedication and exemplary conduct whilst performing the role of uniformed response officer in Selby District throughout the year April 2010 to March 2011.

During the year, PC McCreedy’s consistent and unrelenting professional approach is demonstrated by the exceptional results he achieved; he attended 318 incidents, arrested 70 suspects and half of the 122 crimes he recorded were detected. Investigations of note include PC McCreedy’s conduct in a year long fraud investigation, and his contribution to the recovery of £7,500 worth of stolen whisky which culminated with a suspect being charged to court.

Superintendent Ken McIntosh said: “PC McCreedy is a credit to North Yorkshire Police and the police service as a whole. His experience together with determination and commitment not only improved performance on his own band but undoubtedly had an effect district wide.”

Police Constable Ben Astin, of the Selby Safer Neighbourhood Team,was awarded a Director’s Commendation for his determination, dedication and exemplary conduct whilst performing the role of response officer in Selby District throughout the year April 2010 to March 2011.

PC Astin has been a consistent performer during the entire year in which he attended 255 incidents, arrested 87 suspects and recorded 83 crimes, 66% of which were detected despite being in his probation period. This is a significant testament to his ability and productivity, especially as this involved regular periods away from his primary role through attachments to other departments.

Superintendent Ken McIntosh said: “PC Astin is a credit to North Yorkshire Police and has set a standard to which every student officer should aspire. He has shown a real aptitude in the area of drug related crime, in which he has arrested numerous individuals including more serious offences such as possession with intent to supply drugs.”

Police Constable Mark Skelton, of the York Safer Neighbourhood Team, was awarded a Director’s Commendation for his investigative skills and initiative demonstrated when collecting evidence from the scene of a motor vehicle reported to have been broken into on 7 May 2011.

PC Skelton successfully managed to recover the property and demonstrated excellent investigative skills in collecting evidence from the scene. This enabled him to identify the suspect who was later arrested and charged with the offence. The offender pleaded guilty and received a 16 week custodial sentence.

Superintendent Ken McIntosh said: “PC Skelton is a credit to North Yorkshire Police and has set a high standard of behaviour and the exemplary investigative skills he has clearly demonstrated  should be encouraged in all of our officers.

TemporaryInspector Dave Murray, Police Constables Joanne Fawcett, Neil Wardrop Kalinka Smith-Owen Police and PoliceCommunity Support Officer Ian MacDonald, of the Bedale Safer Neighbourhood Team, received Director’s Commendations for their professionalism and dedication to duty during their attempts to resuscitate a woman recovered from the Harbour at Bedale beck on 15 May 2011.

The woman had left several notes to family members stating she would be in the beck. Following a search of the area, the deceased was located partially submerged in the water by PC Fawcett. PC Walker entered the water and, assisted by PC Smith-Owen and T/Inspector Murray, recovered the woman from the water. CPR was commenced on her by all of the officers in rotation, until the arrival of the air ambulance.

Superintendent Ken McIntosh said: “The actions of the team of officers on this occasion were in the finest tradition of North Yorkshire Police.

The paramedics praised the officers for their extensive efforts in attempting to resuscitate the woman and providing the crew with the best possible opportunity of further rescue attempts upon their arrival. Sadly their efforts proved unsuccessful.”

Sergeant Mark Hughes and Police Constable Mick Cleghorn, of the Richmond Safer Neighbourhood Team, were awarded Director’s Commendations for their professionalism and actions taken at the scene of an incident involving a violent offender who has already assaulted one person in the Richmond area on 3 May 2011.

PS Hughes and PC Cleghorn attended the incident and were confronted by the man brandishing a mallet, throwing bricks and challenging the officers who remained calm and controlled in communicating with him in an attempt to get him to cooperate. He attempted to attack the officers and Taser was deployed successfully.

Superintendent Ken McIntosh said: “As a result of the manner in which the officers dealt with the affray, no further injuries were caused to members of the public, the offender or officers.”

Police Constable Joanne Theaker, of the York Safer Neighbourhood Team, received a Director’s Commendation for her search for a suicidal man on Clifton Bridge, York, on 9 April 2011.

PC Theaker demonstrated initiative in conducting an area search which resulted in locating the suicidal man who intended to jump into the River Ouse. Whilst under pressure from the man not to alert others to her location, she discretely managed to let colleagues know where she was whilst gaining his trust by engaging him in conversation. This resulted in a successful outcome when the man agreed to move from the river edge and was detained for a mental health assessment.

Superintendent Ken McIntosh said: “The quick location of the distressed man and the skills used by PC Theaker under duress are an excellent example of the training received by officers.”

Police Constable Stuart Davies and David Herbert, of the Selby Safer Neighbourhood Team,were awarded Director’s Commendations for their dedication, energy and enthusiasm during Operation Orate, an investigation into crimes across Selby District.

The focus of the operation was to increase Selby District’s detection rate for offences whilst developing intelligence on criminal activity. PCs Davies and Herbert  were the lead officers tasked to address the situation. Operation Orate led to the detection of over 130 offences and the execution of 72 warrants across the district, contributing significantly to achieving the district’s targets.

Superintendent Ken McIntosh said: “PCs Davies and Herbert are a credit to North Yorkshire Police in setting an example to others of what can be achieved through organisation, determination and drive.

Police Community Support Officers Simon Weaver and Donna-Lise Taylor, of the Ripon Safer Neighbourhood Team,received Director’s Commendations for their resilience and capability at the scene of a potentially fatal road traffic collision on 19 February 2011.

PCSOs Weaver and Taylor arrived at the road traffic collision and quickly took charge of a scene which included victims who were seriously injured.

  ?The fire and ambulance services, and Road Policing Group arrived to find a well organised and contained scene enabling the rescue and investigation to commence without delay. The fire service and Road Policing Group praised PCSO Weaver’s and Taylor’s handling of the incident.

Superintendent Ken McIntosh said: “Both PCSO Simon Weaver and PCSO Donna-Lise Taylor went beyond what would have been expected of them, preserving the scene, organising a road diversion as well as gathering witness details. They also ensured the correct information was passed to the force control room so that the right resources were deployed.” 

Inspector Mike Fenton and Police Constable Tracey Brewster, of the Scarborough Safer Neighbourhood Team, were awarded Director’s Commendations for their actions taken to deal with an organised crime group in Scarborough on 31 May 2011.

It followed a suspicious online order made from Tesco in Scarborough which was similar to a fraud which had taken place at other branches across the country.

As a result of this operation, two arrests were made and a number of further crimes were identified, believed to have been committed by these individuals and their associates involving approximately £196,000.

Specialist Operations Directorate:

Police Constable Tony Papworth, of the Firearms Support Unit at Tadcaster,was awarded a Director’s Commendation for his initiative and bravery during the rescue of a man from the River Ouse, York, on 13 November 2010.

He arrived at the scene after a report of three men in difficulty after their boat capsized. Two of the men had managed to reach safety. However, the remaining man was still in the river. The river was extremely fast flowing and PC Papworth and a colleague recognised they needed  to act quickly and take decisive action as time was vital.  The officers commandeered a nearby boat, and with the assistance of the owner, rescued the man from the river using both skill and considerable courage.

T/Chief Superintendent Andy Macmillan said: “PC Anthony Papworth acted in the highest traditions of the service. I have no doubt that the initiative and quick actions saved the man’s life.”

A Cleveland officer, Police Constable Yasmeen Hussain was awarded a Director’s Commendation for her dedication and professionalism in providing support to the widow of a victim of a fatal road traffic collision on the A19 near Picton on Sunday 24 October 2010.

PC Hussain gave up her time during a period of annual leave to assist following the incident in her role as Family Liaison Officer following a fatal road traffic collision. PC Hussain regularly visited the victim’s widow to ensure she was updated on the police enquiry and not left in isolation due to language and cultural barriers. Her knowledge and experience were invaluable to the Senior Investigating Officer in ensuring that the family’s needs were addressed sensitively. PC Hussain was also mindful of the widow’s welfare needs and the fact the suspect was a family member.

The offender pleaded guilty to death by dangerous driving and received a two year sentence at Teesside Crown Court.

T/Chief Superintendent Andy Macmillan said: “The support PC Hussain gave was vital to the effectiveness of the police investigation and she is commended for her dedication and commitment to providing family liaison following a traumatic fatal road traffic collision.”

Traffic Constables Richard Ellis and John Kendall and Police Constables Jamie Mullen and Paul Richardsonwere awarded Director’s Commendations for the way they dealt with an incident in a high stress situation on the A64 on 19 July 2011 which could have led to fatal injuries to members of the public.

A stolen motor vehicle activated the ANPR cameras on the A64 at Malton travelling towards York. After sighting the vehicle, TC Ellis and TC Kendall pursued the vehicle reaching speeds of over 100mph.

PC Mullen and PC Richardson identified the stolen vehicle entering the slip road of the westbound carriageway of the A64, travelling against oncoming traffic. PCs Mullen and Richardson then drove onto the eastbound carriageway of the A64 to warn oncoming vehicles.

T/Chief Superintendent Andy Macmillan said: “All four officers displayed quick thinking and ingenuity, very probably preventing a tragic incident from occurring. They also preserved evidence in difficult circumstances which meant the offender was brought to justice.”

A West Yorkshire police officer,PoliceConstable David Perryreceived a Director’s Commendation andMr Trevor MacArthur was awarded a Director’s Certificate of Appreciation for their brave attempts to resuscitate the victim of a fatal road traffic collision on the A168 near Marton Cum Grafton on 11 December 2010.

Despite the risk to their personal safety, because of the vehicle wreckage, they carried out resuscitation on the seriously injured driver of the vehicle in the collision in an attempt to save his life. Attempts to resuscitate the victim continued until the arrival of the emergency services. Sadly the victim’s injuries were not survivable.

T/Chief Superintendent Andy Macmillan said: “PC Perry acted in the highest tradition of British policing. Despite being off duty, he did nor simply pass by and let someone else deal with the incident, he made strenuous efforts to prevent a tragic outcome. Mr MacArthur took decisive and courageous actions that go beyond those expected from members of the public.”

Police Constables James Scott and Sean Daly,of the Firearms Support Unit at Thirsk, Director’s Commendations for their bravery and professionalism in detaining a violent man with life threatening injuries on Monday 8 April 2011.

PC Scott and PC Daly were on mobile patrol when they responded to an incident of a man in Nether Poppleton who had made threats to kill as well as self inflicted knife wounds. During their negotiations, the man became more distressed and his actions were unpredictable. The officers acknowledged the danger that the situation presented and recognised the male’s injuries so acted quickly in detaining the male who became extremely violent. He was restrained before being taken to hospital where his injuries were treated.

Chief Inspector  Mark Iveson, of the Force Control Room in York,was awarded a Director’s Commendation for his leadership and professionalism in commanding a complex multi-agency emergency response following a collision on the A64 at Tadcaster on 6 July 2011 involving an overturned prison bus containing nine category B high risk sex offenders.

This was a difficult and challenging incident which required the careful assessment of risk against competing operational service demands.

North Yorkshire Police received very positive feedback from the other emergency services regarding how the incident was coordinated and brought to a safe and successful conclusion.

T/Chief Superintendent Andy McMillan said: “Chief Inspector Iveson displayed effective command and his coordination of the multi-agency response was a critical element which led to a successful resolution of this complex and challenging incident.”

Sergeant Julian Pearson, of the Roads Policing Group based at Tadcaster, received aDirector’s Commendations for his professionalism in the face of a very difficult situation following a collision involving an overturned prison bus, on the A64 at Tadcaster on 6 July 2011.

The prisoners, categorised as high risk sex offenders, were being transported to various jails following disturbances at HMP Hull. G4S later confirmed that at least six of the prisoners would have tried to escape if the opportunity had arisen.

Sgt Pearson coordinated all the emergency services to ensure they could undertake their primary roles, whilst ensuring that during the rescue of injured persons, the security of the prisoners was maintained and public safety was assured. All nine prisoners were safely released following initial medical assessment within the vehicle. Six were immediately taken back to HMP Hull whilst three were removed to hospital for treatment to minor injuries.

T/Chief Superintendent Andy McMillan said: “Traffic Sergeant Pearson’s professional and decisive actions on the day meant that as well as the injured people receiving the medical treatment they needed, they didn’t pose a threat to members of the public.”

crime directorate

Back Row: left to right
D/Supt Alan Carey, Peter Berry, Paul Lammond, Steve Upton, DCSupt Karnail Dulku, Teresa Bentley PC Alex Parker, DC Adam Normanton, DC Jezz Pratt, Stephen Walls, DC Andy Hall

Middle Row: left to right
DS Mark Jackson, DS Stephen Paxton, Karen Skippings, Alison Jones, DS Andrew Dudman, DC Sarah Bullock
Front Row: left to right
PC Laura Jane Wood, D/Supt Lewis Raw, Carl Les, Jenni Kilvington, PS Dee Collinson, DS Fionna McEwan, Abi Bateson

Response and Reassurance

Back row: left to right
PS Graeme Kynman, PC Steve Normandale, PCSO Simon Weaver, Insp Mike Fenton, PCSO Ian Macdonald, PC Stuart Davies, PC Mark Skelton, PC David Herbert, PC Ben Astin, PS Mark Hughes, PC Pete McCreedy, PC Mick Cleghorn, PS Jonathan Naughton, PC John Simon Coleman, PC Christoper Walker, Insp David Murray, PC Neil Wardrop,

Front Row : left to right
Jenny Clay, PCSO Donna Lise Taylor, PC Joanne Fawcett, PC Kalinka Smith-Owen, PC Joanne Theaker, PC Tracey Brewster, Karen Dale-Wood, Denise Spence

Specialist Operations

Back row; left to right
Chief Insp Mark Iveson,  PC Anthony Papworth, PC David Perry (West Yorkshire Police), PC Jamie Mullen, PC Sean Daly,  PC James Scott,  PC Paul Richardson,

Front row; left to right:
Trevor MacArthur (member of public), PC Yasmeen Hussain (Cleveland Police),  PS Martin Smith,  TS Julian Pearson

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