A WEST MIDLANDS detective who helped jail a wanted gunman more than 20 years after the shooting has received an award.
Detective sergeant Naomi Mauchan has won the Chief Constable’s Award from the West Midlands Police after securing the long-awaited conviction.
She took on the investigation into the 1996 shooting outside a pub car park in Coventry after the chief suspect was arrested on a flight back from Ireland in 2013.
Anthony Stephens, who was a member of biker gang ‘The Outlaws’, fired the bullet at his victim at The Plough pub on London Road.
The victim, Darren ‘Daz the Mod’ Smith who was a DJ aged 31 at the time, suffered long-term damage after a bullet was lodged in his brain when he approached the group of men, including Stephens, who were damaging cars outside the pub.
According to the police, the bullet has remained there ever since due to concerns that removing it would cause further complications.
DS Mauchan led enquiries after the arrest and – despite taking on the case in addition to her existing commitments – managed to trace witnesses and bring enough evidence to take it to court.
It culminated in the 49-year-old man from Birmingham being charged with attempted murder.
Although cleared by a jury of that offence he was convicted of wounding and jailed for three years last April.
DS Mauchan, who was assisted by DCs Aman Hundal and Wendy Burgess in building up the case, said: “The relief the victim expressed after hearing a man had finally been held accountable for ruining his life was what I joined the police for – to make a difference.
“It may have been 20 years later but his gratitude and thanks for never giving up on the case was humbling to say the least and will inspire me when faced with other difficult cases in the future.”
Detective inspector Ian Wilkins, from Force CID, added: “Had it not been for the hard work and tenacity displayed by DS Mauchan the man responsible may never have been brought to court.
“She was determined the perpetrator should not escape justice and it was down to her professionalism and hard work that a man was jailed.
“Although we pursued a case of attempted murder which has a longer sentence the victim was pleased that someone had finally been jailed for causing his injuries.”