SEVERAL Arbroath police officers and local civilians who battled to save the lives of a comatose man and woman were presented with awards at a Tayside Police ceremony at Eastern Divisional Headquarters, Forfar, on Monday evening.
They were handed over by Deputy Chief Constable Gordon Scobbie and Tayside Joint Police Board vice-convener, councillor Archie McLellan.
Constable Terry Reid piped award recipients and guests into the ceremony as they arrived.
Tayside Police Meritorious Conduct Certificates were presented to Ms Caroline Spink and Mr Alexander Swinton, and the Chief Constable’s Certificate of Merit was awarded to Police Constable Graham Howie, Police Constable Allan Neary, Police Constable Tessa Robertson and Police Constable Majid Zaveri following a major incident in Arbroath on Wednesday, September 29, last year.
In the afternoon, during torrential rain and flooding, a woman was found lying unconscious in a pool of water outside a shop in the town.
Ms Spink was in the area and immediately went to help the woman. Shop staff ‘phoned for an ambulance and, with instruction from a paramedic on the line, Ms Spink began cardiopulmonary resuscitation on the woman and continued until Constables Howie and Neary arrived. With help from Mr Swinton, who had also seen what was happening, the officers lifted the woman from the water and placed her on a nearby pavement.
She was barely breathing and both officers continued the resuscitation attempt until they were advised there was also a man lying unconscious a short distance away.
Mr Swinton took over from Constable Howie who, on investigation, found the man was showing no signs of life. Nevertheless, Constable Howie began CPR on the man and was joined by Constable Robertson and they rendered assistance to the man who, unfortunately, remained unconscious. Meanwhile, Constable Zaveri took over from Mr Swinton and rendered CPR to the woman with Constable Neary.
When an ambulance arrived, the woman received medication from paramedics and began to recover. The man also received further treatment but, sadly, despite everyone’s best efforts, he could not be saved.
A Tayside Police Meritorious Conduct Certificate was also awarded to Mr Mark Campbell following an incident in the town during the early hours of Thursday, December 30, 2010.
Mr Campbell was making his way home from a night out in Arbroath when he heard a woman shouting for help. He saw the woman sitting on a bench with a man leaning over her. She seemed to be extremely distressed and, seeing this, Mr Campbell immediately went to her aid and asked if she was all right.
The woman told Mr Campbell that she didn’t know the man and had been unable to get rid of him. She said he claimed he had knives in his pockets. Hearing this, Mr Campbell shielded the woman from the man to try to protect her. He pushed the man away and after a brief struggle, the man ran off.
Worried for the woman, Mr Campbell stayed with her, reassured her and took her to the police station where he helped her to report the incident. He provided a full statement to officers and a detailed description of the man responsible. This information was invaluable in securing a successful outcome to this incident and, as a result, the culprit was traced and arrested the following day.
The award recognises Mr Campbell’s prompt intervention and selfless actions in ensuring that a vulnerable woman came to no further harm.