Monsters & Critics
July 8, 2008

The family of a boy who drowned while attempting to rescue his half sister have demanded to know why two police support officers standing by did not do more to save their son.

Ten-year-old Jordan Lyon drowned after jumping into a pond on May 3 in Wigan, Lancashire to assist his eight-year-old sister who had got into some difficulties. An inquest into the boy’s death found last week that two police support officers made no attempt to rescue him, standing at the edge of the pond and watching the incident.

Jordan’s stepfather eventually dragged the unconscious boy from the lake with the assistance of a regular police officer who had arrived on the scene after the community police officers. He was later pronounced dead in hospital.

Mr Ganderton said to reporters yesterday, “When we got there the PCSOs [police community support officers] were just stood there watching. I don’t know why they didn’t go in. I can’t understand it. If I had been walking along a canal and seen a child drowning I would have jumped in.”

Mrs Ganderton said she wanted the PCSOs named saying, “If you’re walking down the street and you see a child drowning you automatically go in that water.”

“You don’t care if you’re going to lose your job or not, you don’t care do you.”

“I want them to be named. I want to know why they didn’t go in, I want to know why they weren’t at the inquest when I had to turn up there, and go through the pain of it all.”

However police have defended the support officers saying “PCSOs are not trained to deal with major incidents such as this.”

“Both ourselves and the fire brigade regularly warn the public of the dangers of going into unknown stretches of water so it would have been inappropriate for PCSOs, who are not trained in water rescue, to enter the pond,” said Det Ch Insp Phil Owen, of Wigan CID who led the investigation into Jordan’s death.

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