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Two Oban police officers who saved the life of a man during a mental health episode have been hailed for their heroic actions.
Officers were called to a property in Oban on March 3, 2019, amid reports that a man was stabbing himself and threatening to jump out of a third-floor window.
Constables Shaun Conway and Scott Deakin arrived at the scene and found the highly intoxicated man who had self-inflicted wounds to his stomach and neck.
Specialist police resources were called for but with a two-hour arrival time, the constables were left to try to talk the man down.
After several minutes, the man appeared to be calming down and began engaging with the officers but suddenly started lowering himself out the window.
Both officers quickly grabbed hold of the male, who was covered in blood, and refused to let go despite risking being pulled out of the window themselves.
Constable Conway, 27, said: ‘While we were holding on to him, he actually brought his feet up the wall and tried to kick off the wall as if to get us to let go or take us with him.
‘He eventually gave up and realised we weren’t letting go no matter what so we dragged him back inside and we got him under control.
‘With that particular situation, there’s no opportunity to speak to each other and make a game plan.
‘I’ve worked with Scott for years – we’ve been through many incidents together. You don’t need to talk, we know how each other is going to react.’
Constable Deakin, 31, added: ‘Part of the difficulty in working in a remote area like this is that you know the specialist support is a long way off.
‘Firearms were deployed to it but we were given an ETA [estimated time of arrival] of over two hours so you know that it’s up to you and you’ve got to sort it out until someone else can get there. Luckily, we managed to.’
The duo were nominated for a Scottish Police Federation Bravery Award and were two of the winners honoured at a ceremony in Edinburgh last night (November 28).
Andrea MacDonald, chair of the Scottish Police Federation, said: ‘All the winners this year are a credit to the service and it was my privilege to thank them for their heroic actions, on behalf of their colleagues, families, friends and the general public.
‘Much has changed in Scotland’s policing landscape in recent times with new and unprecedented challenges facing officers on a daily basis.
‘But what remains the same is the dedication and bravery of the men and women who put on their uniform every day and go out to do their duty, keeping the citizens of Scotland safe.
‘The desire to protect and service the public, often in exceptional circumstances, continues to be at the forefront of everything we do.’