Sturgeon hails bravery of Lothian cops

Barry Carlin receives his award from Nicola Sturgeon. Picture: Kenny Smith
Barry Carlin receives his award from Nicola Sturgeon. Picture: Kenny Smith
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A POLICEMAN who saved a woman from drowning and two detectives who tackled a knife-wielding thug have been commended for bravery.

Constable Barry Carlin, from Loanhead, was hailed a hero for his quick-thinking actions to save a woman on a cold January night.

He arrived at the River Esk, Lasswade, to find the distressed woman waist deep in the fast-flowing river.

She was losing consciousness in the freezing water and it was clear she would soon be swept away by the currents.

In a desperate bid to save her, Constable Carlin attached a rescue line to himself and waded out into the water in the dark.

He reached the woman and pulled her to shore where other officers who had arrived were able to assist.

In a separate incident, Livingston-based Detective Constable Bruce Kennedy and Temporary Detective Sergeant David Black, were in an unmarked police car when they came across a man brandishing a weapon.

Temp Det Sgt Black told the man he was a police officer and to drop his weapon – but he refused. Det Con Kennedy drove alongside him and also told him to put the knife down, but the man suddenly lunged at him through a gap in the car window. The man then tried to flee by climbing a wall but stumbled, and together the two officers managed to overpower and restrain him.

Hosted by the Scottish Government, the annual Brave@Heart Awards were attended by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon.

The awards celebrate exceptional acts of bravery from the “blue lights services” and members of the public.

Chief Superintendent Gillian Imery said: “Policing often presents dangerous and challenging situations for our officers and I’m delighted three of this year’s recipients hail from the Lothians. I congratulate each of them on their achievement.”

The First Minister said: “In Scotland there is a real sense of community and we must never forget how privileged we are to have such dedicated emergency professionals and members of the public, willing to assist even when their own lives are in danger.

“Hearing first-hand accounts of the bravery demonstrated during these events really drives home the incredible strength of character and the selfless acts undertaken.”

kaye.nicolson@edinburghnews.com