A day in the life of a Special Constable
Day in the life of Special Constable Satchell and Special Constable Bennett
Swindon South Community Policing Team
Month: March 2018
Shift: 7am - 5pm
Starting location: Gablecross, Swindon
We arrived early at 6.30am at Gablecross police station in Swindon at to kit up; collect radios, laptops (and car keys..!) ready for a briefing by the Sector sergeant at 7am.
Straight after the briefing, we were tasked to go to the Great Western Hospital to carry out 'constant observations' for a patient who was a suspect and had sustained some injuries following an incident the night before. Once the suspect had been discharged (two and half hours later), we conveyed the suspect to Gablecross custody, and carried out the handover procedure with the custody Sergeant and local crime investigator.
Having completed the handover, we carried out a response 1 'blue light' drive for a report of a domestic incident in progress, where a male was reported to be assaulting a female in her home. Having locked the female inside, the male had left the property.
To gain access and talk to the person inside involved Luke and I having to carry out some 'Hot Fuzz athletics', jumping rear garden walls and fences.
During this incident colleagues had stopped a male who they believed to be the suspect about a mile away, and quick-time enquires had to be carried out as allegations of theft, false imprisonment and breach of bail conditions had to be established. Having been at the address for around 45 to 50 minutes, and carrying out relevant enquiries with the reporting person and witnesses, we were able to deal with the resident whilst our colleagues dealt with the suspect.
Following this incident there was a 'lull' in proceedings, so we carried out speed checks and foot patrols around the town centre and vicinity when a call came in from the ambulance service informing us that they were in attendance at a sudden death.
We, as police, are required to attend in the first instance, with any death that has not occurred in a hospital.
Having arrived, and being met by the ambulance crew and immediate family, we had to ascertain the identity of the deceased, understand the circumstances around the death (as far as practicable), then carry out a strategic search of the body and premise to make sure there were no evidence of foul play or any suspicious acts.
Having done this, we have to complete an initial paperwork file on behalf of the coroner, and arrange for undertakers to come and continue with the care of the deceased.
In all, this can take anywhere between two to four hours and at this time we have to ensure we are offering support to the family and friends of the deceased and be able to be a source of information relating to coroners and hospital procedures.
After leaving this incident, we continued to do some proactive foot patrols and speed enforcement when a report of a suspect package came in.
All we knew is that a member of the public has noticed an unattended backpack which had been left next to a bus stop for at least 20 minutes, near to a busy thoroughfare/shopping centre. We attended with a passing by unit, however this came to nothing.
We then made a gentle trip back to Gablecross, so that we could update our pocket notebooks and ensure all our computer work was updated, to then finish our shift at 5pm.
This is a real life example of the work of Special Constables in Wiltshire Police taken from March 2018.