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Coventry Commendations

Three Coventry schoolboys are due to receive the Blue Lamp award for helping the police at a ceremony in which more than 20 police officers and two civilians are to be honoured.

Superintendent Jim McGinty, the Commander of the Little Park Street OCU (operational command centre) will be presenting all the awards at 7.30 pm on Wednesday 8 December in the Police Social Club.

The Blue Lamp award will be give to Michael Graham, 12, his brother Paul, 9, and their friend Paul Sowerby, 12. The three boys distributed more that 3,000 letters offering crime prevention advice to homes in the Coundon area.

In recommending the three for an award Superintendent Neil Goosey said:

"These three youngsters are a credit both to themselves and to their community. They are a wonderful example to others and prove that our young people do care about what is going on around them and are prepared to take positive steps to fight crime and improve the quality of life for their neighbours. I am sure that these three lads will go far in life if they continue to show the same sense of service and public spirit."

The citations for officers are as follows:

  • DC Ian Knowles, who together with a colleague, acted diligently and professionally when interviewing an offender which led to the clearance of twenty-six crimes.
  • Sergeant Alan Cooke, PC Marc Daniels and PC Alexander Grundy who worked as a team to arrest three men who burgled a restaurant. Their use of intelligence combined with personal initiative and a determined approach added up to excellent police work.
  • Detective Sergeant Bob Harper, who has given an outstanding and consistent performance in supervising, advising and directing many serious investigations which have been successfully concluded.
  • PC Ben Oakley and PC Timothy Hayward who took prompt and decisive action when they found a woman attempting to commit suicide in a fume-filled car. Their quick thinking prevented her certain death.
  • DC Martin Lawrence who invested tremendous hard work into the investigation of serious assaults against itinerant alcoholics leading to the life sentence of an attacker. DC Lawrence is also to receive a commendation for his persistence in investigating a robbery where a knife was used. This led to three men receiving prison sentences.
  • PC Chris Bates and PC Mark Burnell who took part in the determined and prolonged pursuit of three thieves who stole and later abandoned a car.
  • PC Nicholas Cosgriff who while on patrol with a colleague stopped and detained a man and woman who were suspected of being involved in drugs. Not only were these two in possession of drugs but also turned out to be part of a team of burglars operating in the city.
  • PC Alex Grundy is due to receive a second commendation for carrying out a prolonged and determined pursuit of a man thought to be armed with a knife and CS gas. PC Grundy’s actions were "in the best traditions of the service" when he eventually captured the man inside a factory following a professional search of the building.
  • DC Martin Lawrence is due to receive a third commendation together with PC Gavin Meadows, PC Steve Turner (now retired) and crime analyst Mrs Karen Smallman for their outstanding commitment during Operation Choir which resulted in 48 offences being detected. The two juvenile brothers involved were found to be committing crimes in Bell Green and the city centre but their age and background made the investigation complicated and was solved by a multi-agency approach which led to their arrest and the dramatic reduction of crimes in their area.
  • Sergeant Alan Cooke and PC Alex Grundy. This is the third commendation for PC Grundy and the second for Sgt Cooke and is to be awarded for their teamwork and dedication following a terrible incident of random violence in the city centre which led to the arrest of five men. The two officers confronted the violent individuals and brought them before the courts.
  • DC Martin Lawrence receives another commendation, together with colleagues, for showing commitment of the highest quality in dealing with a dangerous man who had used a shotgun during an attack on a DIY shop. This man was convicted for both firearms and drugs offences.
  • T/DC Joanne Cluley for her determination in an investigation which resulted in a dangerous sex offender being imprisoned for three years. She displayed great sensitivity with the distressed victims which enabled them to provide excellent evidence.
  • DC Helen Penny for carrying out a tenacious and determined enquiry involving two hardened criminals who were responsible for a great number of offences. Her persistence led to both receiving gaol sentences.
  • Sergeant James Atkins, PC Amanda Carter, PC Richard Huckvale, and once again PC Helen Penny and PC Joanne Cluley. These officers all showed dedication and commitment during an operation which led to an arrest which cleared 59 thefts in the city centre and led to a reduction in city centre crime.

Civilian Mr Jon Carter is due to receive the Commander’s Quality Achiever Award. Jon is a technician at the force garage in Little Park Street and is an example to his colleagues. His time keeping and attendance records are exemplary and his technical knowledge, quality of work and diligence are outstanding. He is a well-respected member of the transport team.

Ann Gass, Press & Publicity Officer  024 76 539090


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CWN / Crimes, Fires & Accidents / West Midlands Police / 6 Dec 99

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