Bare­foot brav­ery recog­nised

Central Leader - - FRONT PAGE - CATRIN OWEN

‘‘Grand­dad was a bit shocked, I didn't re­ally say any­thing to him at the time and ran off into the dark chas­ing a guy with ama­chete.’’

An off-duty po­lice of­fi­cer who a had a ma­chete swung at him by an armed rob­ber has been recog­nised with a brav­ery award.

Con­sta­ble Tain Lam was driv­ing with his grand­dad along Stod­dard Rd in Mt Roskill, Auck­land when he saw two men run­ning down the road in March 2015.

‘‘I got my grand­dad to stop the car and I ap­proached the guy who was be­ing chased,’’ Lam said.

The man was an of­fender who had com­mit­ted an ag­gra­vated rob­bery in a shop nearby, tak­ing a cell­phone from one vic­tim and as­sault­ing another.

With­out hes­i­ta­tion Lam, who was 21 and bare­foot at the time, risked his own safety and ap­proached the of­fender.

‘‘He pre­sented a ma­chete and swung it at my face, pretty much just miss­ing it.’’

The of­fender then bolted and jumped into a mo­tor­way con­struc­tion site.

‘‘We ran onto mul­ti­ple prop­er­ties and jumped fences and I didn’t have any shoes on.’’

While the chase was un­der­way, Lam called 111 and alerted po­lice to the in­ci­dent.

‘‘As soon as he pulled the ma­chete out I was de­ter­mined to apprehend him.’’

‘‘Ev­ery time I tried to get close, he’d swing the ma­chete at me again.’’

The of­fender ran back onto the main road and es­caped in an as­so­ciate’s car.

‘‘I got the reg­is­tra­tion and we gave chase in an on-duty unit and the po­lice he­li­copter too.’’

The of­fender was not lo­cated that night but was found a week later and ar­rested.

While Lam was on the chase, his grand­dad, Rolf Good­win had driven back home.

‘‘Grand­dad was a bit shocked, I didn’t re­ally say any­thing to him at the time and ran off into the dark chas­ing a guy with a ma­chete,’’ Lam said.

Good­win said he was wor­ried Lam would be at­tacked with the ma­chete.

‘‘I went home and couldn’t get hold of Tain and couldn’t sleep un­til he got home in the early hours,’’ Good­win said.

Lam was recog­nised at the Auck­land City Dis­trict Po­lice Awards for his com­mit­ment and brav­ery and with a Dis­trict Com­man­der’s Com­men­da­tion.

‘‘You don’t join the po­lice to get awards but it’s quite cool get­ting recog­nised for this,’’ Lam said.

CATRIN OWEN/FAIRFAX NZ

Con­sta­ble Tain Lam was off-duty and in bare feet when he chased af­ter an armed of­fender.

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