Courage, contribution and commitment to Sussex Police celebrated at awards ceremony
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An officer who saved a man’s life has been praised at a ceremony which celebrated courage, contribution, and commitment to policing.
Olivia Crane (above) joined Sussex Police in 2002, starting her career as a response officer in Bognor. She later joined the Adur and Worthing Neighbourhood Policing Team and spent time at Gatwick as a firearms officer.
Later, in 2016, she was named as Evolves Inspirational Woman of the Year for being instrumental in saving people’s lives, which led to her being one of Sussex Police’s first Police Constables to become a negotiator.
In 2017, PC Crane’s intervention led to the safe rescue of a suicidal man on top of a multi-storey car park, during a storm.
Commenting on her work as a negotiator, she explained how important empathy and understanding were to helping someone in need of assistance.
She said: “Everyone’s lives are different. None of us know what to expect day after day and empathy and understanding are paramount when you’re in the amazing position of being able to help someone and even save their life.
“Receiving my award is an honour, and I am incredibly proud to have served Sussex Police for 20 years. I wouldn’t be here without the support of my friends, family and the policing family.”
A total of 78 awards were presented at two ceremonies which were for long service and good conduct. These included 20 Chief Constable’s Commendations, seven Royal Humane Society Awards and 46 Long Service Awards. A further four people received both a Chief Constable’s Commendation and Royal Humane Society Award, and one person received a Police Public Bravery Award.
All awards were handed out in the presence of Chief Constable Jo Shiner, Deputy Chief Constable Dave McLaren, Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner Katy Bourne and several other dignitaries.
Chief Constable Jo Shiner said: “It’s always a privilege to see members of the force rewarded for their dedication and outstanding bravery. Each person plays their part in keeping our communities safe and providing outstanding levels of service to people in Sussex.
“All the recipients should be proud of the positive difference they have made. I congratulate them all for their contribution to the force.”
One of the Long Service Award recipients, PC Bernadette Lawrie (above), joined Sussex Police as a detective 20 years ago. She has worked in a variety of roles including becoming the first Financial Abuse Safeguarding Officer in the force.
Commenting on her award, Bernadette said: “When I joined Sussex Police, I did so hoping to make a positive difference to people’s lives. It is rewarding to reflect on my 20 years’ service knowing that I have achieved this and continue to do this on a daily basis, by protecting vulnerable victims of fraud.”
Jenny Condon (above) works in the Force Contact Command and Control Department (FCCCD) and was also recognised with a Long Service Award. Jenny, who joined as a radio controller in 2002 and has seen her role evolve and adapt to changes over the years, previously received a department award for her handling of a 999 call from a young man speeding on the M23 intent on taking his own life. She stayed calm and ensured the pursuit of his vehicle ended safely.
Jenny said: “My background before joining Sussex Police was in banking and insurance, so taking 999 calls was a rude awakening. Radio controlling is fast paced, and you have to hold a lot of information in your head at a time, making assessments and decisions quickly, but I love it.
“There have been a lot of changes in FCCCD in 20 years, but the heart of the job is to help people in their darkest times and ensure our officers have all the information they need to keep them as safe as I possibly can.
“I can genuinely say I am proud of the job I do.”
Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner Katy Bourne said: “It is always an honour to recognise and applaud Sussex’s long serving police officers and those who have shown tremendous bravery. I want to express my heartfelt appreciation for devoting their careers so selflessly to keep us all safe. Their courage and years of experience helps us learn how to prevent crime and is an inspiration for the younger generations of policing.”