CCTV pictures of police officer's sea rescue

PC Martin Knights has been praised for his actions

CCTV pictures have been released showing an Essex police officer's quick-thinking sea rescue. PC Martin Knights has been praised for his potentially life-saving actions after a boy got into difficulty in the sea off Southend.

Officers had been on routine patrol near Adventure Island shortly before 3pm on Wednesday, August 1 when they saw a boy struggling in the water. PC Martin Knights immediately stripped off his uniform, jumped into the water and swam 200 metres to rescue the boy.

"I was on patrol with a special constable colleague when we saw the boy waving around in the water. I quickly stripped off, ran down the beach and into the water. The boy's step-mum was really grateful when I brought him back to shore. She hugged me afterwards. It's nice when we, the police, are appreciated for our work."

The 46-year-old officer brought the 13-year-old boy back to shore where he was checked over by paramedics before being reunited with his step-mother. The pair had travelled to Southend for a day out from their home in Middlesex.

"I watched the whole incident on CCTV and have no doubt that, if it were not for the quick thinking and brave actions of Martin, then the boy may not be alive today. The force will look to formally recognise Martin's actions."