Police Officers Receive Australian Bravery Decorations

The officers are among 62 Australians honoured in the latest national bravery awards announced by Governor-General Sir Peter Cosgrove on Monday, 20th August 2018.

Sir Peter Cosgrove, who approves the awards, said Australia as a community was fortunate to have so many outstanding people willing to put themselves in harm’s way to assist others.

“These awards have drawn national attention to the personal efforts of individuals made willingly, without thought of personal risk,” he said.

COMMENDATION FOR BRAVE CONDUCT

Plain Clothes Senior Constable Jeremy Michael Carter and Senior Constable Daniel Thomas Fysh, Queensland Police Service

On the afternoon of 13 June 2013, Plain Clothes Senior Constable (then Constable) Jeremy Carter and Senior Constable Daniel Fysh went to the assistance of a man in difficulty in the Barron River near Cairns in Queensland.

Shortly after 2:45pm a man jumped from the Barron River Bridge into the water and began to struggle in the tidal river, known to be inhabited by crocodiles.

Senior Constable Fysh responded to the incident and when he arrived at the scene he could see the man panicking in the water. As Senior Constable Fysh prepared to enter the river the man went underwater on three occasions. After removing his gun belt Senior Constable Fysh entered the water and swam half way across the river to reach the struggling man.

At this point Constable Carter arrived and, despite the danger, immediately entered the water and swam out to where his colleague and the struggling man were. Working together the two officers managed to get the man to shore, and out of the water where they remained with him until emergency services arrived.

Senior Sergeant Shaun Rodney Furniss, Northern Territory Police Force and Senior Constable Cameron John Mosley, Queensland Police Service

On 13 February 1993, Senior Sergeant (then Acting Senior Constable) Shaun Furniss and Senior Constable (then Constable) Cameron Mosley assisted a woman during an attack at the Western Arrente community of Ntaria (Hermannsburg), in the Northern Territory.

Senior Constable Furniss and Constable Mosley were assessing a non-responsive man after a disturbance of approximately 40 people, armed with various weapons, surrounded them in a threatening manner.

At this time, a female came running down the road in their direction. She was yelling for help as the group indicated that she was responsible for injuring the non-responsive man. The officers saw a man raise a pocket knife above his head and stab the female.

The officers rescued the woman by driving her to a clinic, while avoiding large mobs of armed men.

Acting Senior Constable Furniss and Constable Mosley remained at the clinic assisting health workers who were dealing with a number of people coming in with stab wounds and other injuries caused by the violence that followed the murder.

For their actions, Senior Sergeant Furniss and Senior Constable Mosley are commended for brave conduct.

Inspector Robert James Graham, Queensland Police Service

On the evening of 26 April 1993, Mr (then Senior Sergeant) Warren Francis and Inspector (then Constable) Robert Graham went to the assistance of a vessel in distress near Wide Bay in Queensland.

Queensland Water Police Officers, Senior Sergeant Francis and Constable Graham boarded police vessel P.W.Cahill at around 6.00pm and headed towards the Wide Bay Bar crossing to provide support to the Tin Can Bay Volunteer Coast Guard who had gone to assist a stricken cruiser that was in difficulty in treacherous seas.

On attempting to cross the Bar the Volunteer Coast Guard vessel had to turn back due to the dangerous conditions and after crew members had sustained injuries. Senior Sergeant Francis and Constable Graham commenced crossing the Bar in their vessel and encountered violent waves, wind and driving rain.

They located the stricken cruiser which they observed being knocked down on three occasions by the high seas before righting itself. Senior Sergeant Francis carefully navigated the police vessel close to the cruiser and Constable Graham transferred fuel to the stricken cruiser. They then escorted the cruiser to a less treacherous area where both vessels anchored for the night.

At first light a Tin Can Bay Volunteer Coast Guard boat arrived and assisted the cruiser and the police vessel to more protected water inside the Wide Bay Bar. During the rescue the police vessel was significantly damaged by the high waves and winds and Senior Sergeant Francis and constable Graham sustained broken bones and other injuries.

Senior Constable Michael John Gray, Queensland Police Service

On the afternoon of 18 October 2016, Mr Fletcher Ericson and Senior Constable (then Constable) Michael Gray went to the rescue of two swimmers in difficulty at Elliott Heads Beach, near Bundaberg in Queensland.

At approximately 1pm Constable Gray, who was off-duty at the time, witnessed two distressed swimmers about 100m from the shore at Elliott Heads Beach. Realising they were in difficulty, and being dragged further out to sea with the quickly moving tide, he immediately entered the choppy water and swam towards them.

Constable Gray attempted to communicate with the swimmers, who were in a panicked state, with one swimmer intermittently falling below the water. At this point another man also entered the water and began to swim in the direction of the struggling pair.

When the rescuers reached the swimmers they linked arms with them and began making their way to shore where emergency services were waiting. The swimmers were transported to Bundaberg hospital and both recovered from their ordeal.

Sergeant Robert Minns APM, New South Wales Police Force

Sergeant Robert Minns from Wollongong Police Area Command, received a Commendation for Brave Conduct – one of 40 nationwide – for his quick-thinking and policing skills showed in an act of ultimate courage at Engadine 16 years ago.

Sergeant Minns (then leading senior constable) disarmed a violent offender who was holding a woman hostage at a private residence.

Senior Constable Mitchell Parker, New South Wales Police Force

Snr Constable Mitch Parker was additionally presented with a Royal Life Saving Society Australia (NSW) Commendation Award at Government House in Sydney.

On the eve of the award presentation, Snr Constable Parker remained humble about his heroic act, putting it down to the daily life of a police officer. But for farmer Bob Watkins, having Snr Constable Parker on duty in Dungog at the time undoubtedly saved his life.

The water temperature was about eight degrees Celsius and the man was suffering from both the effects of hypothermia and exhaustion.
The officer swam the patient and dinghy to the edge of the dam and dragged Mr Watkins out of the water in a semi-conscious state. He was taken to John Hunter Hospital where he made a full recovery. 

GROUP BRAVERY CITATION

Senior Constable Stephen Lyons, Senior Constable Mitchell McKenny, Senior Constable Luke Porritt, Leading Senior Constable Mark Wilmore

Awardees are members of the New South Wales Police Force who detained a man attempting to set himself alight at Broken Hill, New South Wales on 19 January 2013.

Senior Constable Michael Romas Grigalius, Sergeant Gordon Dean Holmes, Senior Constable Peter Thomas Low, Senior Constable Adam David Tickner

Awardees are members of the Queensland Police Service who arrested a man following an assault and use of a firearm at Noosa Heads, Queensland on 6 November 2014.

Sergeant Andrew John Bauer, Detective Senior Constable Stewart John Fairgrieve, Senior Constable Wesley Thomas Hopper, Mr Daniel Joseph MacFarlane

Awardees are members of the Queensland Police Service
and the public who rescued a man from the ocean at
Happy Valley, Queensland on 1 November 2015.

Source: Government House, GG Gazette.


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