"A reason to write: A brief history."
I am married to Fiona, who is a serving police officer. I have two daughters Vicki and Kathryn, and four grandchildren Eva, Jacob, Sophia and Oliver.
My career in law enforcement started in the early 1980’s when I became a Special Constable in Carlisle, Cumbria. In 1988 I joined the regulars and was posted to Whitehaven, after intitial training at Bruche Training Centre in Warrington, Cheshire, U.K. I was awarded the class prize for top recruit.
While posted to the West Cumbria area, I received an Policemanship Award for the detection of numerous crimes, including drug offences, car thefts and burglaries. At one point I covered an area which included Sellafield Nuclear plant, which required regular visits. These visits included liaising with police there over a variety issues. At the time there were ten thousand extra contractors which in itself expanding the local population, and brought a variety of problems re law and order.
In 1993, I returned to Carlisle, where I worked until receiving two injuries on duty which combined to force an early retirement in 2001. Spinal surgery was partially successful, but the regular pain and risk of further serious damage was too great to return to duty. The first incident; was when I was driving a marked police vehicle on a night shift. We were hit by a stolen vehicle, which gave me a concussion and problems with my neck/spine. The impact was such, that my partners head smashed the windscreen. The driver was caught but his passengers ran away. The second incident, was a few years later. My colleague and I, were called to a house, for a report of a burglary. It was late at night when we arrived, and dark. At the doorway of the house, I was punched by a male, who stepped from the shadows. I immediately lost the feeling in my legs, for a few seconds.
After the first incident, I was still in pain, but did not want to let people know, because I wanted to continue in my work. Had I known the severity of my injury, I would have made different decisions.
I have dealt with numerous dangerous incidents over the years, including chasing a masked burglar in combat fatigues, who it transpired was carrying, what was thought to be a handgun, but luckily it was a B.B. gun which fell into the river and recovered by a dog handler. Of course I didn't know it wasn't real at the time. I have also been hurt during a tussle with a man who had a knife, whom I had chased after, because he had been involved in an altercation, where he had chosen to use the weapon to threaten others. I was considered tough, but fair by my peers. A reputation that I sometimes cringe at as the years move on, but I did have a deep resolve to instill justice, not least, because of my loathing of what victims have to go through.
I have given chase and made two arrests off duty near my home, when witnessing burglaries. This is reflected in my books, and why I believe I attended the counselling course. A far cry from my police role, but something I felt was needed to ground myself, after the trauma of the incidents that led to my retirement. I have also had reason to deal with off duty incidents that were dealt with at the time, that didn't require official action.
My family have been targeted at home, because of my work. One of these incidents, led to an investigation on me, when I physically confronted and arrested the ring leader of a group who deliberately and calculatingly, appeared at my house with the sole intention of intimidating my family. My action was investigated, quite rightly, after the courts found the ring leader not guilty of a public order offence. There were witnesses, most of whom pretended they didn't see the events. Even though I had caught people off duty in their properties, and helped them in general; that wasn't enough for them to face their fear of reprisals. I understood their worries; even though in most cases, it would be unfounded.
At that time and in that moment, I realised, people in the justice system, who not experienced victimisation, could not understand the torment, anger and frustration, of a family pulled apart at the hands of thugs. There were issues within our household as a consequence, that lasts until this day. Because it affected more than me, I am not at liberty to tell everything. Justice was far from served, and the protectors could not rely on protection. There had to be other ways?
On retirement, and some time after the surgery, I volunteered at the Crown Courts, reassuring and assisting victims in giving evidence. Subsequently I obtained a Diploma H.E. for Counselling. I continued my education with the Open University and studied many topics, including my favourites of American History, the First and Second World Wars and achieved a B.Sc Degree.
I have a short story in “Chiari Warriors” an anthology from Paul Anthony Associates, and published by the same, under the name of Stewart Rawes. My full birth name is Gerard Stewart Rawes. I use my forenames for writing.
I think my book will appeal to anyone who can read between the lines, who like adventure, thrills and a vast dollop of reality; with humour and romance thrown into the melting pot.
The events in this book, are by nature, reflective of actual events, or of circumstances that have enveloped peers and victims. All of the story, is reflective of what justice means to different people.