A special courage
A LOWESTOFT special police officer says he feels lucky to be alive after suffering horrific injuries in a crash with a drink-driver.Special Constabulary Inspector Paul Booker has endured a nightmare 17 months as a result of the collision, which left him in hospital for three weeks, confined to a wheelchair for three months and off full duties for more than a year.
A LOWESTOFT special police officer says he feels lucky to be alive after suffering horrific injuries in a crash with a drink-driver.
Special Constabulary Inspector Paul Booker has endured a nightmare 17 months as a result of the collision, which left him in hospital for three weeks, confined to a wheelchair for three months and off full duties for more than a year.
But he has bravely overcome the odds to return to work, winning an award for his courage.
Responding to a police call-out in Lowestoft on February 14 last year, he had no idea that it would change his life so dramatically.
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The 40-year-old, from Lowestoft, admits he nearly died when the patrol vehicle, in which he was a passenger, was involved in the crash on Tom Crisp Way with a speeding car driven by drink-driver Christopher Standen.
He was left with 'substantial injuries' when the passenger side of the patrol car took the full impact - suffering a badly broken left arm, five breaks in his pelvic bone, a ruptured spleen, two fractured vertebrae, crushed lungs, and a scarred liver.
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On top of all the physical and mental scars, he has also had to face the trauma of a trial.
But last Friday at Norwich Crown Court, Lowestoft Special Sergeant Mykal Trim was found guilty of careless driving.
Trim, 38, was charged with causing a crash by breaching regulations and blocking the road with a police car to stop Standen.
Speaking exclusively to The Journal this week, Insp Booker admitted that he was 'thoroughly relieved' the trial was over, and he was looking forward to 'getting back' to meeting the 'lovely organisations' that he deals with for events locally.
It was this dedication to duty that saw him recently 'humbled' to collect an honour at the inaugural Star of Suffolk awards event in Ipswich - organised by Suffolk County Council and sister paper the Evening Star.
For full report and pictures see page 6 of this week's Journal.