Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

When I'm Tackling Serious Crimes I Think of My Family; Detective Featured in TV Show Reveals His Motivation

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

When I'm Tackling Serious Crimes I Think of My Family; Detective Featured in TV Show Reveals His Motivation

Article excerpt

Byline: KIERAN MURRAY Reporter kieran.murray@trinitymirror.com @ReporterKie

DETECTIVE Sergeant and star of Our Cops in the North Andy Richardson has seen it all over the past 21 years.

Working in the bustling CID office at Southwick Police Station, the 40-year-old manages a team of detectives charged with the task of tackling a wide range of crimes across Sunderland and South Tyneside.

From aggravated burglaries to fraud cases, knifepoint robberies to serious assaults, no one day is the same.

But that's the thrill of the role for Det Sgt Richardson, who features in the Wednesday night BBC1 documentary series Our Cops in the North.

In the first episode, Det Sgt Richardson - who has worked on Wearside since joining the force in February 1998 - led the investigation after a 70-year-old man was robbed at knifepoint by masked attackers in his own home.

That job was a typically resonant one for Det Sgt Richardson, who says one thing is always at the forefront of his mind when he sets about investigating a crime.

Det Sgt Richardson said: "In the first episode, you'll see the aggravated burglary against Michael Blake.

"He's a lovely, hard-working, salt-of-the-earth guy who was a victim of a very violent crime in his own home.

"Throughout the investigation, Michael was our motivation to catch the people responsible. I looked at him and thought, 'He could've been my dad, and those men could've targeted my home.'.

"I've dealt with a huge range of crimes throughout my service so far, including violent robberies, burglaries and murders, but what always motivates you to keep going and deliver a high quality of service is the victim and their families.

"I love the North East of England - it's a fantastic place to live and work. I grew up here, it's where I went to school and where my kids will go to school.

"That really brings it home when I'm investigating a serious crime - it could have been my mother, my sister, my family that this happened to. …

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