A SHETLAND police detective was presented with a superintendent’s commendation earlier this week for his role in bringing in a heroin courier who had flown to the isles with £11,000 worth of the Class A drug concealed in his body last October.
Detective constable Martin Murphy was off-duty when he became suspicious of Liam Senior’s behaviour at Sumburgh airport, alerted his colleagues, and then followed the suspect to Lerwick.
Senior was arrested at a house in the town and sentenced to 44 months in jail at Lerwick Sheriff Court, in November.
Mr Murphy was praised by area commander David Bushell during a short ceremony at the Clickimin Centre, during which the chief inspector also presented two long service medals and commended four constables for their bravery and initiative when they rescued a man from Lerwick harbour last June.
Chief inspector Bushell said: “DC Murphy displayed excellent detective skills in detecting a male who brought a large quantity of drugs into Shetland in 2010. The officer’s actions resulted in drugs not going onto the street in Shetland and disrupted a main supply of drugs to the area.”
The two officers receiving medals for 20 years of police service were sergeant Gordon Fowler who joined Northern Constabulary in May 1990 and constable Ewan MacLeod who joined the force in September 1989.
“Being a police officer is far more than just a job as officers put themselves at danger, are always ‘on duty’, work all sorts of unsociable hours and commit themselves to making communities better. In handing out these medals it is also important to recognise and thank officers’ families who support and give so much over the years,” Mr Bushell said.
Constables Ronnie Mackenzie, Victoria Duthie, Jonathan Mustard and special constable James Spence were awarded area commander commendations for their role in saving a 49 year old man from drowning in Lerwick harbour.
Police had been called to Morrison Dock in the early hours of 20 June last year after being alerted to the man in the water near the Bibby Challenger floating hotel.
Chief inspector Bushell also thanked Steven Wilson, from Aith, for his role in bringing the emergency, “which could have ended up in a fatality” to a successful conclusion.
“These officers were on duty last June in the early hours of the morning when they were alerted to a man who had fallen into the harbour. Together with a member of the public the officers worked as a team to rescue him from the water.
“This involved getting a flotation device to him, then climbing over moored boats and pulling him out of the water with a rope. The man was treated by ambulance but had no lasting injury.
“This was a life threatening situation where the officers acted with bravery and used initiative to rescue the man.”
Photo: From left to right: Ditective constable Martin Murphy, constable Ewan MacLeod, sergeant Gordon Fowler, chief inspector David Bushell, special constable James Spence, constable Jonathan Mustard nd constable Victoria Duthie. Missing from the picture is constable Ronnie Mackenzie.- Photo: Hans J Marter for Shetland News.