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More than 60 members of Merseyside Police have been commended by the Chief Constable for their dedication, professionalism and service to the public.

The 59 officers and three civilian support staff were joined at the commendation ceremony by a taxi driver who intervened in a mugging and detained the offender.

Among the officers commended at headquarters yesterday were:

·         Constable Adam Griffiths who risked his life to rescue two women from a burning building in Kensington

·         Chief Superintendent Rob Carden for commanding a large-scale firearms operation in Aigburth

·         PC Luke Wilson, who along with a colleague, gave life-saving CPR to a man who collapsed outside a pub on Rice Lane

·         PC Aimee Jones who, along with four colleagues, disarmed a man who had stabbed his partner during a domestic assault in Moreton

·         Detective Sergeant Richie Jones for leading a five-year investigation into serial fraudster George Gordon in Sefton
Other incidents that officers and support staff received commendations for included:

·         The fatal dog attack on Clifford Clarke in Clubmoor last May in which several unarmed officers who blocked a possible escape route for the other large dog who was in the garden at the time of the incident, protecting colleagues (who were also commended) who were trying to deal with the aggressive dog and stop the attack on Mr Clarke.

·         A distressed woman threatening to jump off a bridge over the M62 motorway in Prescot last August. The officer, who does not wish to be named, kept the woman talking while a trained police negotiator was en-route and at one point grabbed her and pulled her to safety.

·         The dismantling of an organised crime group from Kirkdale who were trafficking Class A drugs to Scotland and buying and selling firearms. The nine main offenders were sentenced to almost 50 years in prison as a result of the investigation team’s tenacity

·         The reduction of bike thefts in Liverpool city centre following an inititative by PC Dawn Hannon whereby ‘trojan bicycles’ equipped with tracking devices were left secure in bike racks alongside those belongings to the public. Word spread among bike thieves and offences fell by 49 per cent in the first six months.

·         The reduction in crime and anti-social beahviour in Knowsley thanks to the high-level of performance of PC Matthew Bernard who arrested 66 people and investigated 42 crimes in just seven months last year.
Also commended for her consistently outstanding performance since joining the force in 2001 was media manager Donna Dawber, and the force’s Crimestoppers co-ordinator (who wishes to remain anonymous) for improving and promoting the independent charity in their 13 years in the role.

Deputy Chief Constable Andrew Cooke, who presented all the recipients with the Chief Constable’s commendations, said:

“These commendations highlight the commitment, courage and professionalism of our officers and staff. They do not take their responsibilities lightly and have undertaken their roles with dignity and a quiet determination to ensure they provide an excellent service to the people of Merseyside.

“Police officers work in difficult and challenging situations on a daily basis, always supported by civilian colleagues, and must use their training and experience to think on their feet and make the right decision, sometimes in life or death situations.

“The incidents here show officers and support staff successfully tackling anything from serious organised crime groups importing vast quantities of drugs and threatening rivals with guns to opportunistic thieves and robbers.

“The brave involvement of a taxi driver during a mugging in April stopped the victim being even more seriously injured during the attack and led to the female offender being arrested and jailed. This member of the public saw a crime in progress, called the police, then showed immense community spirit in going to the victim’s aid.

“I am immensely proud of each and every one of the recipients of these commendations. They are a credit to themselves, their families and this force.”

Police and Crime Commissioner for Merseyside, Jane Kennedy, said:

“I’m very pleased to be celebrating the courage and dedication to duty of Merseyside Police officers and staff today. There are some remarkable examples of personal bravery and commitment and with Councillor Peter Brennan I am proud to represent the public of Merseyside at today’s ceremony.”

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