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Police recruiting cadets in south of the county

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SPENDING a week at a junior police academy in America, attending the royal wedding, and making lifelong friends – these are just some of the opportunities Volunteer Police Cadets at Dyfed-Powys Police have experienced.

For the past two years, teenagers in Ammanford, Carmarthenshire, and Newtown, Powys, have been part of the cadets scheme, which gives them an insight into policing and offers unique experiences.

There is now a chance for teenagers to put their names forward to join the cadets as Dyfed-Powys Police relaunches a branch of the scheme in South Pembrokeshire. Leaders are calling out for the next group of Volunteer Police Cadets (VPCs), who will start in September, and current cadets are encouraging school pupils to apply.

Volunteer Police Cadet Cheyenne Kirby, who has just returned from a week-long exchange visit to Maryland in America, said: “Personally, I think it’s the most amazing experience ever, and I would definitely recommend joining.

“It is a great opportunity to gain more skills, such as teamwork and communication, as well as learning about the police. I’ve really enjoyed being with the cadets, and since being with them I’ve wanted to join the police in the future.”

Cadets meet regularly and have the opportunity to get involved with voluntary and community work in and around Newtown. They learn vital skills including first aid, communication, problem-solving and leadership, which they develop through ongoing training with the force.

Previous intakes of cadets have represented the police at Remembrance Day parades, helped some of the most vulnerable in the community during Christmas campaigns and have had the chance to learn about various sections of the police force.

Four cadets from Newtown were selected to take part in Dyfed-Powys Police’s first exchange visit to the US, when they were put through their paces at the South Maryland Junior Police Academy – an experience they would never have had if not for the cadet scheme.

VPC Tomos Chick said: “I’m glad I took the opportunity – the idea to come to America for the academy both scared and exited me initially. I didn’t know what to expect, and the culture shock was gruelling. But this programme was a life-altering decision, and I cannot repeat that enough.”

Pembrokeshire cadet Will Lloyd and Ammanford cadet Ffion Jenkins were chosen as Lord Lieutenant cadets this year, and have had the chance to rub shoulders with royalty at the wedding of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.

VPC Ffion said: “I expected to be standing with everyone on the streets by the castle, but I was shocked to find out that I have been invited to the grounds of Windsor Castle.

“I was proud, excited and very honoured to be invited to his historic event.”

South Pembrokeshire cadet leader Andrew Griffiths said: “Joining the police cadets is an excellent opportunity to get to know the police service, engage with the community you live in, and take part in events and experiences that you might not otherwise have the chance to.

“The skills cadets learn range from team building and communication, to confidence and self-awareness, which will set them up for any career they choose to pursue.”

The group is looking to recruit cadets who are currently in school years 8 and 9 at Greenhill, Tenby and Pembroke comprehensive schools. Anyone interested in applying can pick up an application form from PCSO Andrew Griffiths at Tenby police station, or at the schools’ receptions.

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Police officer was assaulted on Christmas Day

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A 25-YEAR-OLD woman from Haverfordwest appeared before the town’s magistrates on Tuesday (Jan 15) to face a charge of assault by beating against a police officer.

Tiffany Rowlands, of West Court, pleaded guilty to assaulting PC Gareth Potter on Christmas Day.

Prosecutor, Sian Vaughan said: “The officer was at the defendant’s property searching the childrens’ bedrooms.

“Rowlands pushed the officer to the chest, and after she calmed down apologised following the incident.”

Defence solicitor, Mark Layton, said: “There’s no record of any injury. They were upstairs, the lights were off so it was dark, and she realises it was wholly inappropriate.”

Magistrates fined Rowlands £40 for the offence and ordered her to pay £85 prosecution costs and £30 victim surcharge.

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Milford Haven: Booms to be removed following oil spill

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BOOMS installed earlier this month to contain an oil spill in the Milford Haven waterway will be removed tomorrow (Jan 17).

Natural Resources Wales (NRW) and partner agencies have continued to survey the affected areas since the incident on 3 January and are satisfied that they have contained as much oil as possible.

Where oil has been found on local beaches, Valero’s clean up team have removed it under advice of NRW officers.

The investigation into how this incident, and the previous oil spill in December 2018, happened is ongoing.

Following further assessments and an inspection of the affected fuel pipelines, Valero now believe that no more than 500 litres of oil was released during the incident on 3 January – significantly less than originally feared.

But the pipelines will remain closed after NRW took action last week to suspend their use. NRW will not allow Valero to reopen the pipelines until it is satisfied they can operate without causing further damage to the local environment.

Andrea Winterton, Operations Manager from Natural Resources Wales, said: “Following a swift response from everyone involved, much of the pollution has been contained and cleaned up quickly, reducing the impact it could have had on wildlife and the environment.

“Along with our partners, we will continue to monitor the situation and will respond to any further reports of oil washing ashore in the coming weeks.

“Valero continue to support our efforts and cooperate with our enquiries into how the incidents happened. Our investigation also continues as we consider what further action we need to take to stop this happening again.”

NRW is asking people who live in the area to report any signs of pollution to their 24/7 incident hotline on 03000 65 3000.

The multi-agency response to this incident has involved the following organisations: NRW, Pembrokeshire County Council, Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority, Milford Haven Port Authority, Marine and Coastguard Agency, Public Health Wales, Food Standards Agency.

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Fishguard: Sex offender caught trying to flee to Ireland

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A sex offender from Bow Street near Aberystwyth who tried to move to Ireland without telling anyone has been jailed.

Dennis Bull, aged 67, was caught trying to drive a van onto the Fishguard–Rosslare ferry with his belongings in the back ready for a new life in the Republic.

Bull, of Nirmit, admitted failing to comply with the conditions of registration as a sex offender and was jailed for 16 months.

Dyfed Thomas, prosecuting, told Swansea Crown Court it was the third time he had breached the order, imposed at Caernarfon crown court in February, 2016, for possessing indecent images of children.

That conviction was on top of earlier offending in New Zealand that included indecent exposure, outraging public decency and gross indecency with a child.

Mr Thomas said Bull had been jailed for 16 months in 2016 and ordered to register with the police. The restrictions imposed included a requirement to tell the police if he intended to change address.

On November 13 last year police at Fishguard harbour became aware of a Ford Mondeo registered to Bull.

A few minutes later Bull was arrested as he attempted to drive a van onto the Stenna ferry, which was loaded with household items.

Bull told the police he had made arrangements to move to Ireland “lock, stock and barrel” because he understood the monitoring of sex offenders was less strict.

In particular, said Mr Thomas, Bull did not like prospective employers being told about his convictions.

Judge Geraint Walters told Bull, “This was a planned and determined attempt to avoid detection. It was only the eagle eyes of the authorities that brought you to book.

“Your record is troubling and you present a risk of committing more offences of a sexual nature.

 “You are defiant of court orders that are there to protect others and it is truly disturbing that you are so keen to breach them.”

Bull was warned that the 2016 order remained in place for a further seven years.

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