Pride of Newham recognised in police bravery awards

Newham’s police officers and members of the public were rewarded last week for their bravery and dedication to keeping residents safe.

The annual Borough Commander Police Commendation Awards – supported by the Recorder – took place at Newham Town Hall, East Ham, to honour those people who go above and beyond their duties in the fight against crime.

Borough commander Supt Rob Jones awarded around 50 officers in groups for their teamwork on incidents and investigations while individuals were also honoured for outstanding bravery in extraordinary circumstances. He spoke of his pride in the officers and individuals.

Ten officers were commended for their “bravery, courage, tenacity and selflessness” when police were set upon by a pitbull-type dog during the arrest of Symeion Pierre in Albert Square, Stratford, in March.

Pc Marc Merritt was forced to use his baton to prise the animal’s jaws open to save his colleague Pc Martin Corderoy who was hospitalised after being bitten on the thigh.

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Once the Operational Response Support Unit officers arrived, Pc Duncan West used his shield to try and restrain the dog while Pc Steve Bones tackled it to the floor with his bare hands, suffering a number of bite wounds.

Temp Supt Dave Moorhead said: “This incident and the brave actions of the officers have gained national publicity. These officers are a credit to the Metropolitan Police Service and to Newham in particular.”

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Pc Duncan West, an area car driver on Response Team D, also received an individual commendation for receiving eight Quality Service Reports, submitted by senior officers for outstanding bravery and dedication in the past year – a number practically unheard of in the Met.

Mr Moorhead described Pc West as “the consummate response police officer”.

Pc Barry Goodman received a commendation for his “bravery, dedication to duty, and courage” after he got two men, a pregnant woman and three children out of a ground floor flat next to a burning shop in Romford Road, Manor Park, in January.

Members of the public were also recognised for their bravery in the face of extreme circumstances including Colin Bell, a security officer at ExCeL, who entered the docks water with a flotation device after a woman jumped in.

And there were awards for Kirti and Varsha Nursimloo who challenged a violent suspect who sexually assaulted a woman outside their home in Dersingham Avenue, Manor Park.

Christine Maroni, an administrative officer, who saved a 17-year-old missing Hungarian girl from forced prostitution after she found her in a house in Forest Gate was also among those honoured.

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