Senior Constable

Peter John ADDISON

YEAR OF DEATH

1995

JURISDICTION

New South Wales

DETAILS OF DEATH

About 12.35am on 9 July 1995 the Constables were performing night shift at the Kempsey Police Station when they were called to a malicious damage complaint at the nearby township of Crescent Head. Having attended one address in relation to the complaint they drove to a dwelling in Main Street Crescent Head. There they parked the Police vehicle in a driveway and began to walk toward the front door. At 1.22am an urgent radio message was received from Senior Constable Addison requesting urgent assistance. It was later learned that the offender McGowan had hidden near the carport of the dwelling and camouflaged and armed with a high-powered Ruger rifle had opened fire on the two Police. While withdrawing to the Police vehicle Senior Constable Spears received a severe wound to the head and collapsed onto the ground. After exchanging shots with the offender Senior Constable Addison quickly sought help from neighbours. While apparently seeking a house with a telephone so he could call for assistance for his partner he was also shot to death. The murderer then committed suicide with the rifle. At the inquest into the deaths of the two Constables the New South Wales Coroner Mr Derek Hand commended both men for their extraordinary courage. Special mention was made of Senior Constable Addison’s bravery in that ”No-one would have blamed him if he had decided to seek safety. Not only was he obviously concerned about Constable Spears but he was faced with an armed man who could have caused much more death and injury in the neighbourhood”. Mr Hand also commended the brave actions of Detective Senior Constable Michael Clark Ambulance Officer Edward Hill and Mr Gregory Barnett. Senior Constable Addison was born in 1959 and joined the New South Wales Police Service on 6 November 1981. At the time of his death he was stationed at Kempsey. He was posthumously awarded the Commissioner’s Medal for Valour. Senior Constable Spears was born in 1959 and joined the New South Wales Police Service on 26 June 1987. At the time of his death he was stationed at Kempsey. He was posthumously awarded the Commissioner’s Medal for Valour.

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