The shift pattern has fallen as such that my team will be working on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, Boxing Day, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day.
My colleagues and I are all geared up to be away from our family and friends for the Christmas period, and we’ve already been getting extremely busy.
In the last week alone I’ve attended violent domestic incidents, suicides, stabbings, assaults and incidents of criminal damage. While this isn’t an unusual week, the amount of incidents has certainly been higher than at other times of the year.
We are expecting to see a rise in domestic incidents over the festive period and I recently attended one such incident.
Our control room received a report of a person having forced entry to multi-occupancy home with sounds of a disturbance and smashing glass heard from inside the property.
My crew mate and I made our way to the address on blue lights and went inside.
As soon as we entered, I saw a smashed vodka bottle on the floor. We were directed up the stairs to one of the bedrooms where a man was sat on the bed.
He wasn’t pleased to see us.
The room was trashed and I could immediately tell from his mannerisms that he was intoxicated. He indicated that his partner was in the toilet opposite the bedroom.
As one of my colleagues spoke the man on the bed, I knocked on the toilet door. A woman opened the door a crack.
I immediately saw the blood on her face and that her cheeks and eyes were swollen with fresh injuries.
“It was him” she whispered.
I knew straight away that the woman needed to be protected.
We have a zero tolerance policy on domestic violence and our Emerald team has recently been out in the community asking officers and members of the public to sign our pledge against domestic abuse.
It was clear that the man involved needed to be arrested; both to safeguard the victim and to allow him to respond to the allegation that had been made against him.
I relayed this information to my colleague who was with him and he arrested the man.
The man was still drunk and his behaviour was erratic. We placed him in handcuffs and escorted him into the awaiting van outside, leaving my colleagues to care for the injured victim. Once we arrived at custody it became apparent that, due to the man’s previous behaviour in custody, he would have to be placed on a cell watch. This meant that a police officer would have to sit with him at his cell door to constantly monitor his behaviour and ensure his safety.
While this is resource intensive, protecting people takes many forms and this is just one of them.
My colleagues and I then put together a detailed handover for the specialist Emerald team to continue the investigation into the incident.
Domestic abuse has a devastating effect on families, especially over the festive period.
It’s always hard to be away from your family and friends at this time of year but we are all proud to be doing the job we do and trying to make a difference in the community.
I hope you all have a wonderful, and safe Christmas, and rest assured my colleagues and I will be out on patrol protecting people and fighting crime as we do every other day of the year.
This blog post was written by PC Ed Finn from the Bedfordshire Police response section.