Special Constable Anthony Peltier is a real life community champion and hero. A Head Teacher by day and a Met Assistant Chief Officer by night, working on the London streets for the last 20 years as a police special.
Not only is he an amazing community champion but he is also the recipient of a Binny Award for his act of bravery and Pride Of Britain award, and for the record he is one of life’s true gentlemen.
Raised on the Kingsmeade Estate in Hackney, one of the roughest estates possible, Anthony knew hardship from the very start of his life.
“I was raised by my mum who did a great job raising three of us on her own,” Anthony shares with us.
“I first joined the Met Specials in 1979 but things were different back then so I left and rejoined in 2002. I trained as a Head Teacher in South London but have always loved policing as well. Us Specials put as much effort into our evening job as we do in our day time job.” Which is what makes these Specials real community champions.
During the recent lock down periods Met Police Specials undertook a whopping 2.2 million hours to help with the pandemic. Now is a good time to point out that they are volunteers who are not paid for patrolling our streets but do the job because they love policing.
“We believe in what we do, it is an important job that is necessary and working with all our communities is vital,” says Anthony.
Anthony was given a bravery award after he saved a young man’s life who had been stabbed on a South London street.
“I was sitting in a cafe with a colleague, I was the Deputy Headteacher in a school and we were discussing work. I noticed a group of boys outside the cafe and saw a fight break out. A young boy then repeatedly stabbed another boy.
“I rushed out and stopped the fight, I held the boy who had been stabbed in my arms and I could see that he was slipping in and out of consciousness so got my colleague to drive me to the hospital as I held on to the boy.
“He had no pulse in the car and I had called the hospital to ask them to be ready for us when we arrived as the boy had been stabbed in the chest.
“The hospital weren’t ready for us so I ran into Accident and Emergency shouting for help and luckily the boy was taken straight into surgery. I waited five hours whilst the doctors worked on him and during that time his father came rushing to hospital and asked me if I knew where I could find his son. I told him what had happened and we both cried together.Luckily he survived.”
It is experiences like these that have made Anthony the amazing police officer he is and show us his incredible dedication not just to policing but to helping our society in general.
“It is a calling of mine to address knife crime, it is a journey that we go through. We must all work together especially with our Safer Schools Officers who work with our youth in schools.
“Our society is hard today, we have children raising children who have no support from our community. We need more youth centres, we need more youth engagement and most importantly we need to be bringing positive opportunities for our youngsters.Youngsters need to realise the real impact of crime.”
Anthony also acknowledges just how much work the Met is doing by working closely with communities across London.
“Police work is just one part of the solution. Our officers go through life saving training and are very well equipped however, too many people are dying through violence and bladed articles in particular.Our role is to help preserve life and the message from all officers is clear that we will reduce violent crime and we are doing so.
“Special Constables are out every weekend undertaking weapon sweeps and helping to keep our streets and communities safe. We believe in what we do.”
I have had the pleasure of meeting Anthony and working with him at the many knife crime events I attend and I can personally tell you that he is not only an amazing role model for other police officers but also a genuine person who really cares.
“It is a fantastic job and I love policing, sadly it can be difficult, we are spat at times by some members of the black community who call us Judas. There are times when I have returned to the police station with my tunic literally covered in spit. Yet we passionately believe in what we do and we know we make a difference in the community.”