When a photographer has to get involved in an arrest
Silence was broken one night by sirens and the whirring of a low flying helicopter. The police chopper, with searchlights blazing, honed in on the lake-front park lands at Wattle Grove.
I grabbed my Police scanner and camera and went to see what was unfolding. The police chatter on the scanners told me the guy they were chasing was last seen in the lake waters and a mention of the nearby shopping centre.
Moving closer, I noticed a person creeping from the bird island bushes and into its murky waters. Click, click, I had the shot, but the drama was far from over…
Spotting two police officers nearby, I yelled out and showed them where the bloke was about to climb out of the water.
One of the officers came over on his own. For some reason his partner decided not to follow him.
The officer grabbed the guy has he came out of the water and the two of them started wrestling on the bank of the lake.
I stepped back to keep taking photos, clicking away as the two of them battled. The policeman appeared to be smaller than the offender, who was also slippery after coming out of the lake.
They ended up on the ground, the offender tried to get up, and the cop held on, pulling him down again.
Click, click, I got some great frames as an officer wrestled, then noticed the offender with his hand reaching near the officers gun. At that point the officer seemed overpowered several times and I had to react. I thought, I’m standing right here, the last thing I need is for someone to start shooting when I’m standing right here.
The offender was up on his knees when I dropped the camera and went in. I helped to throw this guy to the ground and the policeman got on top of him.
It was then the police chopper spotted us and trained the search lights on us. Other police officers arrived on the scene to help.
In the chaos someone trod on my camera, breaking the flash, but the powerful light shining from above helped me get more pictures as the violent offender was led away.
In the end his effort to avoid arrest was far more serious than the reason they police were after him in the first place – he was wanted for vandalism.
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