Duo from Beds Police scoop award
Two police officers who risked their lives to rescue a man from a burning car travelled to Downing Street yesterday for a national police bravery award.
PC Jenny Liddell and PC Gary Walker arrived at the scene after a car driven by two burglars veered off the road at 100mph in the early hours of the morning last October.
When the officers found the car it was already in flames, but they braved the fire to save one of the men.
PC Walker said: "When I arrived the car had caught light. Although it was very dark I could see the situation because of the light from the flames.
"There was one guy lying across in the car, and the car itself was broken into bits. All the pieces from their burglary were lying everywhere.
"One officer at the scene said: 'You can't go in there. It's not safe'.
"But Jenny and I just looked at each other and dived in."
Both officers had been called to the incident after Beds Police had been tipped off about a series of burglaries taking place in Marston.
As police approached the scene of the crime two of the offenders ran away and two others escaped by car.
Shortly afterwards PC Liddell was in her car on one of the exit routes when she saw the burglars' vehicle veer off the road.
She said: "It was a sheer drop down into the ditch to save him, and then we had to pull him up. He leg was broken and his head was bleeding.
"There was nothing he could do as he was a deadweight, and we were grabbing branches and roots to try to pull ourselves up."
The other burglar in the car died at the scene, but the man who the two officers rescued was taken to hospital.
PC Liddell, who was then a member of the Beds Police roads policing unit, and PC Walker, from the Beds and Herts joint dog unit, met Prime Minister David Cameron on Thursday.
The Police Bravery Awards were held later that evening at the Dorchester Hotel in London.