‘Just doing my job’ - heroic policeman battles knife-wielding bank robber in Norwich

PC Richard Doughty. PC Richard Doughty.

Saturday, October 5, 2013
6:00 AM

The policeman who helped take down a knife-wielding bank robber has told today how he pursued the robber through six gardens, over three roads, and over six six-foot fences.

To send a link to this page to a friend, you must be logged in.

The dramatic chase took place after the robber held up the Plumstead Road branch of Norwich and Peterborough Building Society and threatened staff with a knife.

This week Recorder Maureen Baker commended firearms officer PC Richard Doughty for his bravery as Michael Toomey, 42, (pictured) was sentenced at Norwich Crown Court to six years’ imprisonment.

During the robbery on September 16 Toomey grabbed £6,531 from the tills. But it was the quick-thinking actions of the public and PC Doughty, which helped foil the robbery.

The married father-of-two, PC Doughty, said it was the first time he had received such a commendation from a judge.

“I was very proud,” he said. “This was a horrendous crime and I felt really sorry for the staff and members of the public who were faced with it.

“It was a traumatic experience for them all.”

PC Doughty started his career with Norfolk Constabulary 12 years ago and was based at Earlham for eight years. In 2005 he became a fire arms officer and since 2008 he has been permanently based on the armed response vehicle.

At the time of the incident, PC Doughty and his colleague, PC Robert Warrent, were in their vehicle at the Thickthorn roundabout, on the outskirts of Norwich, and were deployed straight away.

“The man had left the building only a minute or two before we arrived,” PC Doughty said. “We then did an extensive search but could not find him.”

A member of the public, who was at the junction of Borrowdale Drive and Fallowfield Close, caught the attention of the officers and alerted them to a man sitting in the driveway of a nearby house, whom she described as “looking suspicious”.

“As he saw our vehicle he hid on the other side of the road and was hiding behind someone’s car.

“He then leapt up and started running off.”

It was then that Toomey tried to make a break for it, trying to escape through six gardens, over three different roads, and climbing over six fences around six-foot-high each.

PC Doughty followed Toomey, taking him from Borrowdale Drive to Dugard Avenue, finally ending up in the back garden of a house on Riseway Close.

He said: “I was very mindful this could have turned into a hostage situation if he found someone in their garden. I wanted to avoid that at all costs.

“I was very aware of his capabilities and the intent he had shown with this knife - it was imperative that I caught him.

“I was not scared but I was aware that he had a potentially lethal weapon. But it was a situation I was equipped to deal with.”

When Toomey was eventually tracked down he was Tasered by PC Doughty, who was then joined by PC Warrent and PC Terry Chambers who helped to handcuff the criminal and recover the money.

The knife - which had been described as having a six-inch blade - was not found on Toomey.

PC Doughty, who sustained quite a few cuts and bruises, added that it was just part of his job and he was “really happy” that Toomey had been detained and a “good conviction” was achieved.

He said: “My personal view is that thankfully we have caught him and he is now serving a decent sentence which will keep the public safe.”

Window cleaner Simon Cramer was also commended for his public spirited actions and was awarded £100 from public funds.

For his part in the incident, Mr Cramer managed to escape the building society and phoned the police once he had realised what was happening.

14 comments

  • Just love the 'photo of our modern friendly police force. Helmet, black gloves, stab vest and especially the big, big gun - it just makes them so much more approachable if, say, you want directions or the time.

    Report this comment

    Kossyman

    Saturday, October 5, 2013

  • One of the best .Unlike the judge in the case reported today where a fleeing thief knocked an innocent man off his bicycle. 28 months is completely insufficient for what has been spoken of in the area as a deliberate act to force pursuing police to cease chase to attend to the injured. What a great shame that the prosecution did not pursue a case of attempted murder or similar to deter these " of no fixed abode" thugs and criminals who plague our area and who are apparently quite willing to use this tactic more and more when fleeing the police, whether a car or cycle. Next time it could be a mother with a buggy and little kids that they choose to run into

    Report this comment

    Daisy Roots

    Saturday, October 5, 2013

  • Kossyman, perhaps you'd like to tackle an armed robber without any protective equipment. The article makes it fairly clear that PC Doughty is an armed response officer. I despair at the crass comments of some of the idiots on this site

    Report this comment

    Andy Fiddament

    Saturday, October 5, 2013

  • that photo is straight out of his personal portfolio - well done big man

    Report this comment

    Jimmy Hupperby

    Wednesday, October 9, 2013

  • Shame he didn't have that Gun on him, would have saved a chase by going 'stand still or I'll Shoot'

    Report this comment

    che bramley

    Saturday, October 5, 2013

  • Just doing your job? Still want your 5 minutes though?

    Report this comment

    dan

    Sunday, October 6, 2013

  • Kossyman. I can only hope that you were I'll or drunk when you wrote this comment. There is lots wrong with modern day policing, but this Officer is exactly the sort of person I want chasing down armed robbers and alike. How effective would a wooden stick been when dealing with an armed criminal? Some people who comment on this site seem to hate it when a public servant does a good job.

    Report this comment

    Ellie

    Saturday, October 5, 2013

  • Ah ! so that's where Dixon of Dock Green went to.

    Report this comment

    Rolf

    Saturday, October 5, 2013

  • Kossyman, perhaps you'd like to tackle an armed robber without any protective equipment. The article makes it fairly clear that PC Doughty is an armed response officer. I despair at the crass comments of some of the idiots on this site

    Report this comment

    Andy Fiddament

    Saturday, October 5, 2013

  • Not on my Manor!

    Report this comment

    Drayton Resident

    Saturday, October 5, 2013

  • Kossyman, perhaps you'd like to tackle an armed robber without any protective equipment. The article makes it fairly clear that PC Doughty is an armed response officer. I despair at the crass comments of some of the idiots on this site

    Report this comment

    Andy Fiddament

    Saturday, October 5, 2013

  • It takes all sorts. Those who trip over a kerb and try to claim compo for lost overtime and those who make no fuss, " I was just doing my job." Good on Pc Doughty.

    Report this comment

    BG

    Saturday, October 5, 2013

  • Agree totally with BG. Well done Pc Doughty

    Report this comment

    Reader

    Saturday, October 5, 2013

  • So Dan, what is wrong with him thanking people who have helped or shown their gratitude. It was the EDP who have put him in the news not himself so hardly having his five minutes is it?

    Report this comment

    Drayton Resident

    Sunday, October 6, 2013

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Homes24
Jobs24
Drive24
LocalSearch24
MyDate24
MyPhotos24
FamilyNotices24
Weddingsite

loading...

Classifieds, browse or search them online now

The Canary magazine
Order your copy of The Canary magazine

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT