A schoolboy has been praised by police for his help in finding a stranger ‘trying to get into his school,’ after he drew a picture of the man.
Ryan Cook, 10, was at his school in Lemington, Newcastle upon Tyne, last month when he was approached by a man he didn’t know trying to gain access through the school gates.
Unaware of what he should do, the 10-year-old told his parents about this man who had been trying to get inside Lemington Riverside Primary School.
Immediately taking action, Ryan’s mum and dad contacted the police who asked the schoolboy to draw a picture for them in order to identify the man.
So he did, with the picture showing a bald man without a beard, wearing a jacket, pants and shoes. Eventually, using Ryan’s picture, officers were able to confirm with staff at the school that the man was not suspicious, and was actually an official visitor to the school.
Satisfied nobody else had tried to get onto the schools’ grounds, police brought the investigation to a close – but not before personally thanking Ryan for his help.
The officer in charge of policing in Lemington has since given the 10-year-old a certificate signed by Northumbria Police’s Chief Constable.
Sergeant Ashley Palmer of the Newcastle North Neighbourhood Policing Team said, as per a post on Facebook:
It is an absolute pleasure to be able to present Ryan with a commendation for a fine piece of detective work last week.
He did absolutely the right thing to report his concerns to his teachers and parents and he showed great maturity to pick up on what he considered to be suspicious behaviour.
When his parents contacted the police our contact handler asked if he could draw a picture and he was more than happy to do anything possible to assist us.
As a thank you for his hard work, the schoolboy was invited to Etal Lane Police Station on Monday (June 10) to receive his commendation and to be given a tour.
While there, he got to sit in a police car, get locked in the back of a police van, and meet some adorable pups in the Force’s Dog Section.
I had a really good time and I think my teachers will be really proud of me for telling my mum and dad about what I had seen.
I am happy that I was able to help the police and that it wasn’t anything bad in the end. I would definitely do the same again.
It was really fun to meet the police dogs and have a look inside the police van. The officers were really nice and I was really happy about my certificate.
Ryan’s dad, Craig, joined his son on the trip to the police station and said he was ‘really proud’ of him for speaking up.
Amazing. Keep up the good work, Ryan.
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A Broadcast Journalism Masters graduate who went on to achieve an NCTJ level 3 Diploma in Journalism, Lucy has done stints at ITV, BBC Inside Out and Key 103. While working as a journalist for UNILAD, Lucy has reported on breaking news stories while also writing features about mental health, cervical screening awareness, and Little Mix (who she is unapologetically obsessed with).