Longtime service to town rewarded
The police, and wider Matamata community, have benefited from policemen like Martin Carpinter and counsellors like Jo McNaughton, which is why they were rewarded for their services last Thursday.
Matamata sergeant Graham McGurk said Carpinter’s special skills of identifying perpetrators through crime scene analysis and patterns made him an essential figure to the force.
‘‘Some people like to kick down doors but they need people like Marty to identify the perpetrators,’’ he said.
Carpinter received a long service and good character medal for 28 years of service to the police force.
He initially worked in Auckland and moved to Matamata in 1997.
Counsellor McNaughton gained a district commander commendation for her work through Starfish.
The non- profit organisation for youth was a joint project started by Matamata police and local counsellors.
‘‘At the time we either had to lock up youth offenders or let them go; there was no middle ground,’’ McGurk said.
The group works with young people who have already offended and also tries to prevent crime by providing counselling, mentoring, youth development and holding events.
One of the highlights of working with Starfish for McNaughton was starting Road Rage last year.
At the event local police and firemen competed against each other at the youth-run street party.