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Police ranks swell

Wednesday, 22nd December, 2010

New to the beat ... Probationary Constables (from left) Jodie Foreman, Christopher Chaff, Brendan Shailes, Warren Furphy and Chloe Mugridge New to the beat ... Probationary Constables (from left) Jodie Foreman, Christopher Chaff, Brendan Shailes, Warren Furphy and Chloe Mugridge

By Andrew Robertson

A few months working in the financial sector during the height of the global financial crisis was enough to convince Warren Furphy he needed a change.

So the Zimbabwe-born Armidale resident decided to swap his stock charts for a service revolver and joined the NSW Police Force earlier this year.

Now the 25-year-old has found himself stationed in Broken Hill with four other Probationary Constables fresh out of the NSW Police College at Goulburn.

They are among 711 officers who have now joined the ranks of the largest police force in the Southern Hemisphere. 

Their arrival will boost police numbers at the local station which has struggled to maintain minimum staff levels in recent months. 

The problem got so bad that the command was forced on a number of occasions to bring in police from Menindee and Tibooburra to complete shifts in Broken Hill. 

Prob. Const. Furphy, who arrived in Australia with his brother and parents in 2003, and his four comrades will spend the next three years here.

During their first 19 shifts each of the novice officers will be paired with a "Buddy" to ensure they follow correct procedures.

In 12 months' time they will become fully fledged constables - provided they pass their remaining six subjects.

After completing a commerce degree at the University of Armidale, Prob. Const. Furphy embarked on what he thought would be a career in the financial sector.

But his start in the industry coincided with the height of the global financial crisis and after a few months he decided the job wasn't for him.

While Armidale was his first choice of country centre in which to serve, he is not disappointed at having to leave. "Barrier was my second choice but I'm more than happy to come out here.

"I enjoy country living. I've never really lived in the city."

Jodie Foreman is also pleased to be anywhere except the city. For the past 20 years Prob. Const. Foreman worked in local government in Mildura but she is now looking forward to being a police officer.

Prob. Const. Foreman, who had Barrier as her number one pick, said she could never live somewhere like Sydney.

"I like community policing."

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