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  1. #1
    Lo523's Avatar
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    How can anyone not help a drowning child!

    Blunkett's bobbies stood by as boy, 10, drowned in pond

    Two police support officers looked on as a boy of ten drowned because they had not been trained to deal with such an emergency.

    Jordon Lyon had jumped into a pond after his step-sister Bethany Ganderton, eight, got into difficulties while swimming.
    Emergency services were called and two police community support officers - nicknamed "Blunkett's bobbies" - were the first on the scene on their bikes.
    Jordon (right) drowned as he was trying to save his step-sister Bethany

    But instead of wading in, they stood on the side of the pond and waited for trained officers to turn up. When Sergeant Craig Lippitt, a regular police officer, arrived minutes later, he stripped off his body armour and jumped into the pond in Wigan.
    Jordon was pulled from the water but, despite attempts to resuscitate him, was pronouced dead in hospital.
    The incident is likely to raise further questions over the effectiveness of support officers who have been described as "plastic police" - under-trained and ill-equipped. Jordon's parents, Tracy and Anthony Ganderton, yesterday condemned the pair for failing to help in the crucial minutes in which their son's life could have been saved. At an inquest into Jordon's death, Mr Ganderton said: "When we got there, the PCSOs just stood there watching. Jordon's parents are demanding to know why two community police officers didn't try to save him "I can't understand it. If I had been walking along and seen a child drowning I would have jumped in."

    Detective Chief Inspector Philip Owen of Greater Manchester Police told the inquest: "PCSOs are not trained to the same extent as police officers, so wouldn't have been taught how to deal with a situation like this."
    But Mr Ganderton retorted: "You don't have to be trained to jump in after a drowning child." He and his wife are demanding to know why the PCSOs did not try to rescue Jordon the second they arrived on the scene, why the officers did not give evidence at the inquest and why their identities were concealed. The inquest was told Jordon had gone to play in area of open land with his brothers Haydon, eight, Brandon, nine, his stepbrother Anthony, nine, and Bethany on the afternoon of May 3rd. Fishermen had seen the children collecting tadpoles at the edge of a pond.
    Last week's inquest into Jordon's death in Wigan, Lancashire, heard that two police community support officers arrived at the scene before regular police officers arrived, but neither went into the water to try to save him. But moments later Bert Wright, 66, and John Collinson, 63, saw that Bethany had her arms around her stepbrother's neck and he was holding her up, even though his head was under the water. Both men waded in and managed to get hold of the girl, but Jordon had disappeared.

    Mr Ganderton had been alerted and he and a friend raced to scene. After seeing the two PCSOs standing at the water's edge, they jumped in, to be joined moments later by Sergeant Lippitt.
    In a statement issued after the inquest, Mr Owen said there was initially confusion over the location of the incident. When the support officers arrived, there was no sign of the boy in the water. "Having made an assessment, one of the PCSOs called the Greater Manchester Police control room and an officer was at the scene within five minutes of this. "It would have been inappropriate for PCSOs, who are not trained in water rescue, to enter the pond."
    Recording a verdict of accidental death, deputy coroner Alan Walsh said: "This is an inquest of utmost tragedy."
    There are 14,000 PCSOs who have the power to issue fines for anti-social behaviour, public disorder and motoring offences. They are cheaper to train and to employ than regular officers and were introduced by the then Home Secretary David Blunkett in 2002.

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  2. #2
    CW Mock's Avatar
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    Yeah, no shit.

    Doing nothing to save two drowning kids because you were officially not trained to is a load of bullshit. If they knew how to swim, they had basic training already. If two regular officers could wade in, then I think two reserves/etc could do it too. You don't need to be taught that in an academy.

    I wasn't there, so I won't say any more. I don't think I have to though, as the actions speak for themselves. I'm glad the full timers went in after them.

    I am curious though ... are police officers there taught water rescue? I never had anything remotely close to that in my academy training.

  3. #3
    phantasm is offline Corporal
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    we had 1 day of swimming training in the academy, but I know how to swim. I work in a city where every borough is bordered by water on at least 2 sides. We work in pairs. I dont' know if my partner can swim better than me or not, but if the time came "can you swim good?" and either him or me would jump in, and the other would watch the vest/gun until additional units got on scene.

    Sgts & ESU have life preservers in their cars (or they're supposed to). We also have a harbor unit, and aviation that would assist.

  4. #4
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    I did not receive any "formal" training in swimming.

    I know how to swim though. And I think I could save a kid who was drowning.

    Jump in
    Grab kid
    Get out of the water

    3 simple steps.

    We also have life preservers in all our cars.
    No one has greater love than this, to lay down ones life for ones friends - John 15:13

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  5. #5
    Pedro56's Avatar
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    All the more reason that civilians should not be doing jobs police should be doing.

    "I am the guy that keeps Mister Dead in his pocket." -'Mad' Max Rockatansky

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  6. #6
    Hannibal's Avatar
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    Who the hell else was there and why did they need the police to jump in and get the kids in the first place? As for the two on-lookers in uniforms..WTF?

    I wasn't there either, so I will only specualte so much to say that something doesn't seem right about that situation.

    "Stupid should hurt."

  7. #7
    Jackalope's Avatar
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    Of course the PCSOs should have jumped in, but I have to assume that the person(s) who originally called the police must also have been adults. Why didn't any of them jump in?
    "I'm not a coward,
    I've just never been tested
    I'd like to think that if I was,
    I would pass"
    ~Mighty Mighty Bosstones~

  8. #8
    gozling's Avatar
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    the whole thing sounds totally fucked up

    i feel so bad for that family

    what is that saying... in a time of stress we resort to our training... and well...
    they had none...

    the non cop in me screams ..... how can someone not have any fucking sense???
    anyone there could have made or at least SHOWED an attempt to help.. and that is ANYONE

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  9. #9
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    That's horrible. I don't understand how they or any adult could have stood there and watched - I just pray that the boy didn't realize that someone was there and not helping him.

  10. #10
    Standard Dave's Avatar
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    Police defend drowning death case

    Police chiefs have defended two community support officers (PCSOs) who stood by as a 10-year-old boy drowned in a pond.

    Jordon Lyon leapt into the water in Wigan, Greater Manchester, after his eight-year-old stepsister Bethany got into difficulties on 3 May.

    Two anglers jumped in and saved Bethany but Jordon became submerged.
    The inquest into his death heard the PCSOs did not rescue him as they were not trained to deal with the incident.

    Jordon was playing at the edge of the pond, known locally as John Pit, off Wigan Lower Road, in Standish Lower Ground, with his two brothers, stepbrother and stepsister on 3 May.

    He was trying to support Bethany as she struggled in the six-feet-deep water before slipping from view.

    Anglers managed to pull Bethany out but Jordon was out of sight before they could get to him.

    The alarm was raised and the PCSOs arrived on the scene. Police said they could see no sign of Jordon in the water, so they radioed trained officers for help.
    Greater Manchester Police said an officer was on the scene within five minutes.

    Members of Jordon's family also rushed to the scene to join the search.

    He was eventually pulled from the pond but despite attempts to resuscitate him he was later pronounced dead in hospital.
    A verdict of accidental death was recorded.
    His mother, Tracy Ganderton, and stepfather Anthony, of Bluebell Avenue, Wigan, are demanding to know why the PCSOs did not try to rescue Jordon and why they did not give evidence at the inquest held by deputy West Manchester coroner Alan Walsh.

    Mr Ganderton told the inquest: "I don't know why they didn't go in. I can't understand it.

    "If I had been walking along a canal and seen a child drowning I would have jumped in.

    "You don't have to be trained to jump in after a drowning child."
    Mrs Ganderton said on Friday that the PCSOs in question should be named.
    "If you're walking down the street and you see a child drowning you automatically go in that water.

    "You don't care if you're going to lose your job or not, you don't care do you?

    "I want them to be named. I want to know why they didn't go in, I want to know why they weren't at the inquest when I had to turn up there, and go through the pain of it all.

    "I want to know why they didn't have to be there as main witnesses.
    "They should have to be there. They shouldn't have a job."

    In a statement after the hearing, Det Ch Insp Phil Owen, of Wigan CID, who led the investigation into Jordon's death, said: "PCSOs are not trained to deal with major incidents such as this.

    "Both ourselves and the fire brigade regularly warn the public of the dangers of going into unknown stretches of water so it would have been inappropriate for PCSOs, who are not trained in water rescue, to enter the pond.
    "This was a tragic incident where a young boy lost his life and we would once again want to pass on our heartfelt condolences to Jordon's family."

    Paul Kelly, chairman of the Police Federation in Manchester, said PCSOs do not have the same level of training as police officers to deal with life-saving situations.

    He said: "The message is clear and unambiguous - it's the government, they are trying to fool the public.

    "They take a person and dress him up as a police officer but they just don't have the same powers.

    "Every single police officer I trained with left training school with a life-saving certificate of some sort."

    He said the PCSOs might not have been able to swim and in that case they should not have risked their lives.

    But he added: "People throw themselves into rivers and ponds to save people every day because it's the right thing to do.
    "This is an accident waiting to happen again."
    West Lancashire Coroner Jennifer Leeming said: "Neither myself or the Deputy Coroner can comment on individual cases but the statement put out by Greater Manchester Police reflects the evidence that was given in the courtroom."


  11. #11
    Virginian's Avatar
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    If they couldn't swim, I could understand it, so I don't want to judge too much. Really sad situation though.

  12. #12
    Ducky's Avatar
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    Only 6' of water though? Hardly real "swimming" depth for most adults.

    All else aside though, that poor little girl may wind up needing therapy later in life, as she may feel guilty that her brother drowned while saving her.
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  13. #13
    Trojan 42's Avatar
    Trojan 42 is offline Retired Ninja
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    The article does say that when the PCSO's arrived there was no sign of the boy, who was underwater. So maybe that explains their actions? I'm surprised they weren't called to give evidence though.
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  14. #14
    phantasm is offline Corporal
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    As a side note, I was at the beach this summer with a friend, and she had a car accident earlier this year, and started having problems in the ocean. I'm not the greatest swimmer, but I was able to at least swim back with her, in the ocean far enough so that we could stand and walk in. More like riding the wave, and pushing her forward, but whatever, it worked. lol. No need for the lifeguard.



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