Three officers this week have been recognised with a Bravery Medalsl and another has received a Governor's Multicultural Award.
Senior Constable Andrew Emms and Constable Darren Knight were presented with Police Bravery Medals in recognition of their actions at the scene of a fiery vehicle crash at Seaford Rise in 2016. The medals were presented by Commissioner Grant Stevens at a ceremony held at the Police Academy on 27 March.
About 8.50 pm on 19 November 2016 Constable Knight located a vehicle that was on fire after it had collided with a tree on South Road. The passenger was out of the vehicle, but the driver was trapped inside, with the fire that was burning under the vehicle spreading and growing in intensity.
Constable Knight attempted to extinguish the fire without success and as he assessed that it was not possible to remove the driver through the cabin of the utility because of limited space, the fire was burning at his feet.
When Senior Constable Emms arrived at the scene he found Constable Knight was on the rear tray of the utility and attempting to pull the driver out of the cabin through the rear window. Understanding the volatility of the situation he then acted quickly to help in the removal of the driver.
At this time flames were entering the cabin of the vehicle and despite significant personal risk to his own wellbeing he reached into the cabin through the broken driver’s door window and forced the legs of the driver out from under the dashboard and steering wheel. He then climbed onto the tray area and, along with a member of the public, helped Constable Knight remove the driver through the back window of the vehicle.
In the citation it was noted that both police officers “acted with compassion and determination to aid and preserve life, and remained calm and controlled throughout the incident”.
The cabin of the crashed vehicle was completely destroyed by fire. Both the passenger and driver were taken to hospital for assessment and treatment. Two members of the public also assisted the police.
Commissioner Stevens acknowledged that the professional response of the two officers was highly commendable and brought great credit not only to themselves, but to SAPOL.
On 29 March Brevet Sergeant Nathan Mulholland was awarded a Bravery Medal in the Australian Bravery Decorations Honours List, awarded for acts of bravery in hazardous circumstances. He was recognised for his bravery in an armed offender incident at Paralowie in the early morning of 25 May 2010. Read the full citation for Brevet Sergeant Mulholland (see page 14).
At a special ceremony hosted at Government House on 27 March, Community Constable Jemal Mussa from Elizabeth LSA Crime Prevention Section received the Governor’s Multicultural Award for ‘Youth Individual’ from Governor Hieu Van Le.
Community Constable Mussa has been recognised for his volunteer work within the African community both locally and internationally. He is a mentor to junior members in the local community and last year returned to his native Ethiopia with donated soccer equipment and boots to give to those in need.
In November 2017 Community Constable Mussa was one of three African community members who graduated from SAPOL’s Community Constable Development Program at the Police Academy. They became the first African community constables, joining seven recruits from the Aboriginal community in the inaugural intake from the revamped program. Prior to this he spent three years working as an administration officer in SAPOL’s Expiation Notice Branch.
The Governor’s Multicultural Awards celebrate outstanding South Australians who promote multiculturalism and increase understanding of the benefits of cultural diversity in our community.