74 year old Essex Police Officer catches someone 45 years his junior

28 March 2019, 16:01 | Updated: 28 March 2019, 18:03

PC Keith Smith

A 74-year-old Essex police officer has chased down and arrested a suspect in Benfleet, who is 45 years younger than him.

Special Constable Keith Smith, who has been a serving volunteer police officer for more than 20 years, ran through gardens to catch a 29 year old man on Tuesday, after a vehicle didn't stop when flagged to.

Essex Police tweeted saying "Despite being 74yrs old he engaged in not only the pursuit but a foot chase detaining the suspect in the gardens of a nearby house".

Essex Chief Constable BJ Harrington described Mr Smith as an "inspiration to us all".

SC Keith Smith from the Casualty Reduction Unit said: “I’ve been a volunteer police officer since 1997 and have loved every minute of it.

“This is just one incident of many where I’ve played my part in helping to keep Essex safe. Being a volunteer police officer is really rewarding and I’d recommend it to anyone.”

Matt Hine, Road Crime Manager said: “Being a Special Constable is a really unique opportunity to support the public, reassure them, stop crime and help keep people safe.

“Keith should be really proud of himself, not just for this incident but for the thousands of times he has helped hundreds of people, kept them safe and arrested criminals across more than two decades of volunteering for his community.”

John Tait, 29, of no-fixed address, pleaded guilty to with driving while disqualified, driving without insurance, failing to stop and harassment at Southend-on-Sea Magistrates’ Court on Thursday, March 28.

He is due to be sentenced next month.