Posted on Tuesday 14 June 2022
During Response Policing Week, we’re bringing you insights into the role of our response police officers who work 24 hours a day, seven days a week to keep County Durham and Darlington safe.
Today, meet PC Georgia Whitfield – she’s a response officer based in Consett, but has also been covering as Acting Sergeant for her team.
She joined Durham Constabulary in 2019 when she was 24.
What is a typical day in the life of a response officer?
There isn’t really a typical day as every day is different! But usually, we will start the shift with a briefing and jobs will be allocated out, such as missing people enquires or arrest attempts and then we will try and get paperwork done before heading out to progress investigations or go out on patrol and obviously attending any jobs that drop in.
What type of jobs do you attend?
A bit of everything! From neighbour disputes to burglaries and shopliftings to sexual offences.
Are there any jobs that are particularly memorable to you and why?
Suicides always stay with me; I went to the suicide of a young girl a few years ago and I still think about her a lot and wish we had got there earlier. But, on the other hand, I spent a lot of time with a lady in mental health crisis and a few months later I saw her in Consett town centre and she came over and told me I had saved her life, which was an amazing feeling. I also dealt with a stalking where, at court, the suspect was given a restraining order and I was really proud that I was able to make a difference to that victim.
What do you enjoy most about response policing?
The excitement of travelling to jobs on blue lights and never knowing exactly what you’re going to find when you get there! I love being Lost Person Search Manager and leading the searches for high risk missing people. Also, it’s great to go to jobs and find the suspects; it’s always satisfying to arrest them and get a positive outcome.
What do you find most challenging about response policing?
Dealing with public expectations can be challenging sometimes. I will always do my utmost to progress a crime and gather evidence, but sometimes there just isn’t enough to bring about charges and it can feel like you’re letting victims down, even though you’ve done your best.
What advice would you give to someone who is thinking about applying to become a police officer?
Do it - it’s the best job in the world! There are so many different roles and skills available, there will always be something to strive for.