“Although a very long time ago now, there is one incident that stays with me.
I was a young uniformed officer when we were called to a report of a house fire, with persons on premises. When we arrived, we found someone had set fire to the curtains in the lounge, the Fire Brigade were in the process of putting it out.
I remember a very smartly dressed lady come out of the house, she said she was responsible for starting the fire, it wasn’t her house it was her boyfriends (easy arrest I thought!).
She was informed she would to be taken to the police station, as I searched her (before putting her in the vehicle) she winced and said ‘watch my side’ I lifted her top which revealed a nasty gaping stab wound.
It transpired she had set fire to the curtains to get out of the house – her abuser had stabbed her then hidden the knife (she was able to tell us where it was and also that the neighbour had been watching through a nearby window!).
This incident always reminded me of how desperate victims can be and the lengths they may go to, to get help sometimes.”