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Bristol airport reopens after security threat

Bristol airport reopens Credit: PA: Ben Birchall

Bristol airport has reopened after police investigated a suspicious package on board a plan.

Police were called after an item was reported on board during a routine aircraft inspection following the arrival at Bristol Airport of Ryanair flight from Alicante just before midnight yesterday (Saturday 22 August).

Passengers were evacuated from the terminal as a precaution and the Airport was temporarily closed to air traffic, reopening just before 6am this morning.

Police were satisfied that the item did not represent a threat.

As a result of this disruption a total of 12 inbound flights diverted to other airports, and arrangements are being made to bring aircraft and passengers back to Bristol.

Some delays to today’s flight schedule can be expected as a result of this incident, but Bristol Airport is working with airlines to minimise disruption to passengers wherever possible. Bristol Airport apologises for the inconvenience caused to passengers but puts safety and security first at all times.

– Bristol Airport Spokesperson

Who is the new Chief Constable for Wiltshire?

Mike Veale, the Deputy Chief Constable for Wiltshire, is to become Chief Constable Credit: Wiltshire Police

It has been announced that, subject to confirmation, the current Deputy Chief Constable for Wiltshire, Mike Veale, is to become the county's Chief Constable. He will succeed Pat Geenty who is retiring.

I am absolutely thrilled at being appointed - subject to confirmation - as the Chief Constable of Wiltshire Police.

During the past ten years I have loved every minute of serving the public of Wiltshire and Swindon and I am incredibly proud that this Force is one of the top performing forces in the country.

The legacy that Chief Constable Pat Geenty is leaving behind is that Wiltshire Police is in the great position of being able to withstand austerity and continue to provide a good service to the public.

The priorities for the coming months are to maintain that success and continue our tranformation programme, in particular our strategic partnership with the two local authorities, and our strategic alliance with Avon and Somerset.

If I am confirmed in the post I will be taking over a Force with a strong reputation, high standards, a clear set of values and talented officers and staff. I want to build upon all of this good work.

Like all police forces, Wiltshire Police is facing major austerity challenges as well as an increased demand for local services. Therefore, I want to ensure that we are thinking laterally and radically about how we can save money, whilst working hard to protect frontline resources.”

– Deputy Chief Constable Mike Veale

Mike Veale has been the DCC at Wiltshire Police since March 2013, having joined the Force in January 2005 as a Detective Superintendent from Avon and Somerset Constabulary.

He started young, becoming a police cadet at 16. He joined the Avon and Somerset Force as a Police Constable in 1984, taking on a number of roles before transferring to Wiltshire. His most recent responsibility has been overseeing the force's transformation as well as working with the council to integrate services.

Mike is married with one son.


New Chief Constable for Wiltshire

Angus MacPherson, the Police and Crime Commissioner for Wiltshire & Swindon with Mike Veale, who is to be made Chief Constable Credit: Wiltshire Police

The next Chief Constable for Wiltshire is to be the current deputy Chief Constable, Mike Veale. If the appointment is confirmed by the Police and Crime Panel next Monday, 11 May, he will begin work on 1 June.

Angus Macpherson, the PCC for Wiltshire and Swindon made the announcement this morning, following the decision by Pat Geenty to retire. Mike Veale was the only candidate for the post.

I have every confidence that he will make an excellent Chief Constable for Wiltshire. He understands Wiltshire and Swindon and has been at the heart of developing strong relationships with Wiltshire Council and Swindon Borough Council and with our colleagues in Avon and Somerset Constabulary.

He is committed to my agenda of maintaining local policing.

In his interview, Mike Veale demonstrated a clear understanding of the principles of British policing, with integrity, fairness and public service at the core.

– Police and Crime Commissioner for Wiltshire and Swindon, Angus Macpherson

Boy with learning disability pushed off bike

Police in Cheltenham are appealing for information after a 16-year-old boy with a learning disability was pushed off his bike and threatened with harm by three youths.

The teenager was riding along the Honeybourne Line cycle path at about 4.30pm last Sunday afternoon (26 April) when he was approached by the three boys.

They pushed him off his bike and said they would hurt him with a knife, although no knife was seen.

A couple stopped to help the victim, who suffered a grazed knee in the fall, and walked him home.

Supermarket trolley thrown off bridge

Police are appealing for witnesses after a trolley was thrown onto the M4 motorway between junctions 18 and 19 early this morning.

It was on the eastbound carriageway near the Pucklechurch Road overbridge on the B4465 Westerleigh Road.

Two vehicles hit it and were damaged.

This constitutes a serious risk to life and anyone who has information or has seen anything that may be linked is urged to contact police

– PC Mark Lambert, Traffic officer

Gloucestershire police officer a "controlling sexual predator"

A Gloucestershire police officer has been jailed for three years and nine months for having sex with three vulnerable women while on duty.

Darren Heath took advantage of his victims over an 11 year period, having sexual relations with three women and harassing another.

Heath had previously pleaded guilty to five counts of misconduct in public office.

On sentencing the judge said his actions had damaged the women and damaged the reputation of Gloucestershire Constabulary.

Detective Inspector Giulia Marogna gave a statement outside court.


Gloucestershire police officer pleads guilty to misconduct

A police officer, currently suspended from all duties, has pleaded guilty to five counts of misconduct in public office.

Darren Stephen Heath, 44 and of Taynton near Newent appeared at Bristol Crown Court today.

The charges relate to several cases in which Mr Heath made inappropriate advances or formed sexual relationships with vulnerable women he met through his duties.

The alleged offences are due to have taken place between 2002 and 2012.

Heath pleaded not guilty to two charges of rape, two charges of misconduct in public office and theft.

The case is now being referred to the Professional Standards Department.

Darren Heath would use his position as a police officer, whether it was during his time working in restorative justice or as a family liaison officer, to identify women he could offend against.

These were often victims of crime who were already extremely vulnerable but who he wanted to take advantage of even further. Our investigation has been lengthy because we have had to spend time regaining the confidence of women who had been badly let down by someone they should have been able to trust, precisely at a time when they needed him the most.

Heath was manipulative and calculating while he was offending and that is one of the reasons he was able to carry on doing this over a number of years.

The most disappointing thing is that he has shown no remorse whatsoever towards his victims and made no comment throughout his interviews. He could have made it a lot easier for them but chose not to.

Those victims have shown incredible bravery by supporting this prosecution and I want to pay tribute to them for that.

It doesn’t stop here though - I have absolutely no doubt there are more victims out there and I would appeal to them directly to come forward. We want to talk to you and get details of what Darren Heath has done. You will be listened to and we may be able to direct you to support services that can help you.

– Detective Inspector Giulia Marogna, Senior Investigating Officer with the Constabulary's Anti-Corruption Unit

90 weapons handed in under Dorset gun amnesty

Dorset Police ran a two-week gun surrender campaign to encourage anyone holding an illegal weapon to hand it in safely.

The initiative was aimed at local people in the community who wished to hand in unwanted firearms and help take guns out of circulation permanently.

A total of 93 firearms were surrendered to stations across Dorset during the campaign, along with a large amount of ammunition.

  • 31 handguns
  • 11 air rifles
  • 27 shot guns
  • 7 air pistols
  • 6 BB guns
  • 4 replica guns
  • 5 rifles
  • 1 humane killer
  • 1 bird scarer

We are extremely pleased at the success of this firearms surrender and would like to thank everyone who took part. The vast majority of these surrendered firearms were not being used in criminal activity. Our aim is to stop guns falling into the wrong hands. Every gun given up is one less that poses a threat or that criminals can potentially get hold of. I would like to remind residents that Dorset is a very safe place to live with very low levels of gun-related crime. Levels of illegally held firearms are low but this surrender was a real opportunity for members of the public to relinquish any weapons that may be outside the law.

– Operational Support Superintendent Nicky Searle
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