Dorset Police celebrates long service and policing excellence at awards ceremony

19 September 2019
Officers, staff and volunteers have been recognised for their exceptional contribution to keep Dorset safe at an awards ceremony. 

The event, held at the Dorford Centre in Dorchester on Wednesday 18 September 2019, saw ten awards presented to recipients in the company of family and friends by Chief Constable James Vaughan and Philip Warr, the High Sheriff of Dorset. 

Several officers and special constables were awarded with Long Service and Good Conduct Medals with other officers and staff recognised for going above and beyond, saving lives and protecting vulnerable people.

PC Asher Lee-Duncan and PC Anthony Berry received a Chief Constable’s Commendation for their work in apprehending members of an organised crime group who abandoned a vehicle wearing balaclavas and carrying weapons including machetes in Bournemouth. While attempting to arrest a known drug dealer who was in possession of a knife, PC Lee-Duncan received an injury after the offender kicked him in the head. PC Berry began searching for his colleague who was now not responding to his radio. Once both colleagues were reunited, the suspect was arrested and charged with numerous offences.

Nine officers and members of police staff were recognised for their work in supporting an 86-year-old victim who lost £120,000 to fraudsters who pretended to be builders doing work to her home. During the investigation, numerous other victims were identified and protected. The four main offenders in the case received four to six year prison sentences each. 

Officers and staff involved in a two-year investigation into a drugs gang were given a Chief Constable’s Commendation. The case was hugely demanding with 12 people charged with numerous offences, including a case summary of over 160 pages, 800 statements, 120 mobile phones examined, over 400 telephone data applications and over 1,250 items presented to court. The actions of the officers and staff involved in the investigation and prosecution have resulted in a major organised crime group being put behind bars and not causing additional harm the communities of Dorset. 

Receiving his 20 year Long Service and Good Conduct Medal was Sergeant Matthew Whetham, who joined the Metropolitan Police in 1998. His career before joining Dorset Police in 2016 saw Matthew working on specialist gang and violence teams, being on duty in Hackney at the start of the 2011 London riots, policing special events such as Notting Hill Carnival and being seconded to the specialist operations room for six months during the London Olympics. Matthew currently serves in Dorset as a patrol sergeant for Bridport.  

Special Constable Geoff Waters was recognised for volunteering with Dorset Police since 1999. Over the years, Geoff has predominantly supported patrol officers in Ferndown and Bournemouth. More recently, he has assisted in the training of new special constables, particularly in relation to custody procedures where he works full-time. 

Chief Constable James Vaughan, said: “I am privileged to be able to commend the hard work, dedication and professionalism of our officers and police staff.

“It is really important that every individual is recognised for their valuable contribution in preventing and detecting crime and supporting victims.

“Recognising our people who regularly go above and beyond is one of the best things I do as Chief Constable.”
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