Norfolk police officers nominated in national awards

The dedication and initiative of Norwich and Norfolk police officers has been recognised after they won a string of nominations for prestigious national awards.

Jane's Police Review Gala Awards are the most influential awards in policing. This year's event will take place in London next month and will be attended by key figures, including home secretary Theresa May.

PC Laura Symonds is among new recruits across the country to be shortlisted as Student Officer of the Year.

Based at Bethel Street police station, Norwich, she has been with the force for just 20 months. She regularly volunteers for extra duties such as policing public events, representing the force at a local youth leadership course, or taking on extra responsibility in the management of a missing persons database.

To improve the handling of domestic abuse cases, she arranged for community support officers to visit the homes of victims – a scheme that will be trialled more widely later this year. The force also praised her resilience in restraining an offender who punched her in the face soon after she went out on independent patrol.


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Mr Gormley said she had 'laid the foundation for an excellent career with the constabulary'.

PC Jason Howell, based in Gorleston, has been shortlisted for Community Police Officer of the Year.

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He has won praise for enlisting the help of a reformed criminal to tackle shoplifting. Working with the offender, he was able to identify why certain stores were targeted at certain times and helped retailers protect their businesses.

He overhauled the town's CCTV system and organised a Christmas 'shopwatch' scheme to help the force build up intelligence about known troublemakers.

Chief constable Phil Gormley said: 'Jason is an asset to Gorleston, to Norfolk Constabulary and, indeed, to the wider police service.'

The Magdalen and Bradwell local delivery unit and the NHS Great Yarmouth and Waveney Bradwell district nursing team has also been shortlisted in the Diversity in Action category.

Do you want to praise a local police officer? Contact Ben Kendall on 01603 772423 or email ben.kendall@archant.co.uk.

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