Fire officers acquitted of manslaughter

Two fire officers have been acquitted of manslaughter charges following the deaths of four of their colleagues at a warehouse fire in 2007.

Fire investigation cost £4.6m

An investigation into the deaths of four firefighters who died at a warehouse blaze in 2007 cost £4.6 million

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Man jailed for life for Leamington pensioner murder

Scott Melville must serve a minimum of 26 years in prison Credit: Warwickshire Police

A man who murdered a Leamington pensioner has been jailed for life with a minimum of 26 years.

91-year-old Sydney Pavier was attacked at his home in Gordon Street in September last year and died as a result of his injuries six weeks later.

Sydney had served in the army and worked as a carpenter Credit: Warwickshire Police

Police say they do not know why Scott Melville, 39, of no fixed address, broke into Mr Pavier's home.

DCI James Essex from Warwickshire Police said:

“Sydney was found badly beaten, lying unconscious on his bed, when relatives called to see him on the morning of 16 September last year.

"The door had been kicked in and the house ransacked.

“Despite his horrendous injuries, Sydney battled to live, but more than a month later on the 28th October he sadly lost his fight for life.”

Three new puppies recruited to police forces

A fully grown Belgium Shepherd Malinois police dog Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Archive/Press Association Images

Three puppies have been recruited to the Warwickshire and West Mercia Police forces, and they are about to start their training.

The Belgium Shepherd Malinois dogs named Echo, Delta and Luna are to be walked into towns and around bus stations, train stations and other bust places so they can get used to crowds and traffic.

The will also undergo obedience training, so as they grow bigger, they will learn basic police dog skills like tracking and barking on command.

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29 men charged with violent disorder at football match

Warwickshire Police have charged 29 men with violent disorder Credit: Joe Giddens/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Warwickshire Police have charged 29 men with violent disorder following a football match between Atherstone Town and Barrow AFC in October 2013.

Violence broke out at Atherstone's home ground - 'The Snake Pit' - on October 12th 2013, during an FA Cup 3rd round qualifying tie.

Following an investigation, Warwickshire Police made 34 arrests in total and along with the 29 arrested, four more accepted police cautions whilst another man was released without charge.

The men charged will appear before Lemaington Spa Magistrates Court on February 28th.

Detective welcomes jailing of 'dangerous' robbers

A senior police officer who helped put three armed robbers behind bars for smashing their way into a Warwickshire bank with a digger has welcomed their 40-year sentence.

Karl White, James Kennea and Leigh Barry have been jailed for a total of 40 years and six months for a string of robbery offences, including a raid on HSBC in Atherstone.

Det Insp Rob Harris said they were "dangerous" men who had been "motivated by greed".

These were a group of dangerous individuals motivated by greed who would stop at nothing to try and steal cash.

They were clearly intent on using extreme force, which included the use of a firearm, and after their actions at the HSBC in Atherstone it is a miracle no one was hurt as the staff inside the building were only inches from the collapsing wall.

We conducted a long and complex investigation to bring these offenders to justice, so I am very pleased with the result.

These convictions should send a clear message that we will be tenacious in our investigations and do everything in our power to protect the public from this sort of offending.

I would also like to reassure the public that these types of incidents are rare, and overall crime rates are falling.

– DI Rob Harris, Warwickshire Police

Armed robbers caused major damage to bank

Three armed robbers caused major damage to a Warwickshire bank when they ploughed through the back wall using an earth-moving digger.

Karl White, James Kennea and Leigh Barry have been jailed for a total of 40 years and six months for a string of robbery offences, including the raid on HSBC in Atherstone in June last year.

The damage caused by the digger at HSBC in Atherstone
The damage caused by the digger at HSBC in Atherstone Credit: ITV News Central

The digger had been stolen from a site in Leicestershire the day before the robbery, on June 11.

Four masked men - including the trio now behind bars - stormed into the bank through the hole in the wall. One of them was armed with a handgun.

The three men who used the digger to tear a hole in the bank have now been jailed
The three men who used the digger to tear a hole in the bank have now been jailed Credit: ITV News Central

They escaped in a blue BMW which had been reported stolen from Birmingham the day before.

This broke down a short distance away - so they car-jacked a silver Corsa, forcing a woman and her young child out of the vehicle and driving off in it.

The Corsa was found abandoned nearby shortly before 1.30pm.

Read: Witness appeal after bank armed robbery

Men who used digger in bank robbery jailed for 40 years

Three men who used a digger to smash their way into a bank have been sentenced to a total of more than 40 years behind bars.

Karl White, James Kennea and Leigh Barry stole an earth-moving digger from a site in Leicestershire and used it to break into the rear of the HSBC in Long Street, Atherstone, Warwickshire.

Karl White, James Kennea and Leigh Barry have been jailed for a string of robbery offences across Warwickshire
Karl White, James Kennea and Leigh Barry have been jailed for a string of robbery offences across Warwickshire Credit: Warwickshire Police

Armed with what looked like a gun, four men - including the three men now in jail - stole around £6,000 from the building during the raid in June last year.

And when their stolen BMW escape car broke down, they hijacked a new one, forcing a mother and child to get out of their car.

White, aged 27, of Marie Close, Atherstone, and Kennea, 27, from The Radleys, Birmingham, were each sentenced to 18 years in prison for conspiracy to rob the bank, plus 10 years for conspiracy to rob G4S personnel and six years for possession of an imitation firearm, to run concurrently.

Barry, 28, of Ely Close, Birmingham, was sentenced to three years for aiding and abetting robbery, plus 18 months for robbing a William Hill bookies in Erdington in April of this year.

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Champagne-loving robbers fail to steal cash in raid

Three masked raiders armed with a baseball bat stormed into a Warwickshire off licence to steal cash - but only got away with three bottles of champagne.

The men, wearing balaclavas and dark clothing, threatened staff and demanded money but staff did not hand over any cash and they were forced to flee penniless.

They smashed a number of items in Drinks4U in Bridge View, Coleshill, before grabbing the bubbly and making their escape in a black car.

Police are now hunting witnesses to the raid, which happened at around 9pm on Thursday.

Warwickshire and West Mercia police move closer to joint services

The Warwickshire and West Mercia police forces have moved a further step towards their goal of operating joint services.

They say their "strategic alliance" will help them to meet a funding shortfall of £30 million by 2015.

The forces are keeping both names and deny the changes are a merger. However, they could lose one of their chief constables and operate from a single control room in the future.

Andy Parker, Warwickshire Chief Constable, said the two forces will now be operating the same.

Police warn of increase in crashes in harvest season

Slow-moving tractors and extra mud on road surfaces during harvest season means motorists need to take extra care on the region's rural roads, police have warned.

As farmers across the region prepare to harvest their crops, the Safer Roads Partnership run by Warwickshire and West Mercia Police revealed the increase in farming activity at this time of year traditionally leads to a surge in the number of accidents.

A farmer goes to work in Market Bosworth, Warwickshire
A farmer goes to work in a field near Market Bosworth, Warwickshire Credit: Joe Giddens/PA Wire

They say drivers often take unnecessary risks such as overtaking at inappropriate points or speeding, not leaving themselves enough time to stop if they unexpectedly come across a slow-moving tractor.

The amount of mud and other debris on the roads also increases, making the surface slippery and more difficult to stop on.

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