New police recruits start
THEY’RE the new kids on the block and the ideal Christmas gift for Coffs Coast residents and police.
Jack Gilbey, Peter Risby, Bradley Bryan, George Chakty and Tiahna Paulson had their first day on the job as probationary constables yesterday.
Three will serve in Coffs Harbour and two go to Grafton as they spend the next 12 months learning the ropes.
“How good is this,” said Coffs/Clarence local area commander, Superintendent Mark Holahan.
“We have been doing it tough with staffing and these five new probationary constables will hit the ground running.
“They are very important to this command and we will be getting them operational as soon as possible. They will work with a buddy for a six- to 12-week period and will be out and about during the Christmas and New Year periods.”
Mr Holahan said Coffs/Clarence had experienced the biggest jump in police numbers of any command in the State, with our authorised strength increasing from 181 to 193 as of January 1.
“We are working to recruit to fill these positions which comprise eight detectives and four general duties officers.
“And from January 1, 2012, we pick up another two detectives.”
Jack Gilbey, 20, said he had wanted to be a police officer since his kindergarten days.
“I know this job will give me confidence in myself and the ability to make a difference,” Const. Gilbey said.
George Chakty, also 20, said becoming a police officer had been a boyhood dream.
“Live it now while I’m young and make a difference to the community – that’s the plan,” Const. Chakty said.
Peter Risby, 32, said he wanted to do the best he possibly could in the job while Bradley Bryan, 37, believed his life experience so far would acquit him for his new role.
Tiahna Paulson, 22, said she wanted to make a difference to her community and ‘show that if I can do it, anyone can do it’.
The member for Coffs Harbour, Andrew Fraser, said the five new recruits were welcome but they were not a solution to ‘the long-term problem of understaffing’.