Close encounter for police
Dated: 26 Oct 2009
Police in Newcastle had a close encounter helping school children crack a crime involving a crashed spaceship.
Community Support Officer Scott Wilkinson attended Newburn Manor Primary School to speak to youngsters - aged 4 to 11 - about policing and his role in the community.
But he was interrupted by news from the panic-stricken school caretaker that a spaceship had crash-landed on the school field!
Everyone dashed outside and the area was cordoned off with police tape. CSO Wilkinson contacted his Outer West Neighbourhood team colleague PC Patrick Hammond, who arrived on scene with his siren sounding and lights flashing.
PC Hammond and CSO Wilkinson went to investigate as pupils watched - and ended up arresting an alien! He was detained and put in the back of the police car to be questioned at a local station.
Of course, the scenario was set up by the school and local officers as a fun way for them to get to know their local officers and gain an understanding of policing.
CSO Wilkinson said: "The pupils all thoroughly enjoyed the scenario and many of them thought it was real! This was an excellent chance for them to meet their local officers and also learn at the same time.
"It's important they are aware of who we are, what we do and our roles in the community and this was a really fun way of doing it. Police officers and CSOs are approachable and want to get to know the young people in our community as their views and concerns are important.
"This way, they can see us having a bit of fun and they now know they can come to us for help or advice at any time."
The event, which took place on Tuesday morning, was organised by Newburn Manor Primary School.
Head teacher Jane McFadyen added: "On Tuesday an alien spacecraft landed on our school field and world-wide panic was averted thanks to the help of our local police team!
"This was a super learning day for the children where the children had the opportunity to work on different aspects of the curriculum in a fun and enjoyable way.
"It was also a great opportunity for them to work with the police and gain an understanding of the support they offer the community.
"The children were happy that PC Hammond and CSO Wilkinson looked after the alien! This was a very successful day and we are already planning our next venture, which will of course include our friends from the police."