A RIPLEY Scout leader has landed top accolades from his day job as a police officer.
Pc Colin Newton has been looking back on his 30-year career, including once catching a burglar in the act and hanging on to him until back-up arrived.
Pc Newton – also known as ‘Musky’ – has now been awarded the Derby Divisional Commander’s Cup and named Officer of the Year 2011 at a ceremony for his outstanding contribution to the force.
According to his inspector, the 49-year-old is set to leave ‘some big shoes to fill’ at Ilkeston Police Station when he retires from Derbyshire Constabulary in July.
Pc Newton, who is also a dedicated Scout leader, talked about the changing face of policing during the 27 years he has spent as a bobby on the beat and his current role as intelligence officer.
He hit the streets in Ilkeston in 1981, covering both the town centre and the rural area around the town.
One of his most memorable jobs came during his seven years on the rural patch when a call came in about a burglar alarm sounding in Stanley Common.
“I got there expecting it to be a false alarm,” he said.
“But I could hear somebody bumping around inside the house.”
He called for back-up and sat in wait in the porch for the burglar.
“I knew where it was because it was on my patch but I wasn’t sure anybody else would,” he continued.
“All of a sudden the burglar started climbing out of the window so I jumped on him and handcuffed him and waited for ten minutes before back-up arrived.”
He has seen changes both to policing methods and the types of crime he has encountered in the town over the last three decades.
Insp Nick Daines paid tribute to ‘Musky’ this week. “It will be difficult to replace him – you can replace people but you can’t immediately replace the knowledge and experience that goes with them,” he said.
After his retirement, Pc Newton is looking forward to focusing on his work with Ripley and Heanor district Scouts and is travelling to Switzerland with the group in August.
“I have worked all my life – being a copper is a way of life,” he said.
“It’s not just a job to earn a wage, you’ve got to want to catch bad guys and help people. It will be sad to go and I will miss that part of the job.”