A SQUAD of police officers who took down a pervert who preyed on a woman with learning difficulties and made her perform sex acts have been praised for their efforts.

Detective Constable Shelley Slater, Detective Sergeant Darren Little and Police Constable Elaine Scout, based in Faringdon, were honoured at the latest Thames Valley Police Chief Constable’s awards.

The award highlighted the work they had done to bring to justice Nigel Wheeler, who was jailed for 18 years last February.

At his sentencing, Judge Peter Ross described the depraved abuse that the 62-year-old, formerly of Eastmere, Swindon, subjected his victim to as ‘devious’ exploitation.

Bicester Advertiser:

The court had heard how he had urinated on his victim multiple times and forced her to engage in anal and oral sex.

The team of police officers had worked to collect evidence against him and, at the awards ceremony last week, were thanked for their ‘dedication’ in the ‘complex and challenging’ investigation.

Bicester Advertiser:

Another police officer from Oxfordshire was also commended for his ‘courage’ and ‘resilience’ by the Chief Constable of the force, John Campbell.

PC Jason Brinklow was attacked after stopping a suspected drink-driver near Banbury.

He received a report that the driver of the car could be under the influence and, when he tried to stop him to check, the driver and the passenger unleashed an attack on him.

The man and the boy have now been convicted of assaulting a police constable in the execution of his duty.

Bicester Advertiser:

The awards ceremony also highlighted the work of groups and volunteers across the Thames Valley – which covers Oxfordshire, Berkshire and Buckinghamshire – such as the efforts made by the volunteers of Oxfordshire Lowland Search and Rescue (OXSAR).

The Chief Constable handed an award to OXSAR for their ‘outstanding assistance’ and for ‘often being available at short notice’.

They were praised for working for ‘long periods of time in often horrible weather conditions’.

OXSAR had been used in a number of intensive searches and investigations last year to find missing people that had to be done in a short space of time.

Other awards handed out on the night were given to police staff for their long service.