Listen to DC James Wright speak about his experiences as a detective with Northamptonshire Police.
My name is James Wright. I'm a Detective Constable in the Child Abuse Investigation Unit. I've been in the police for 17 years.
Being a detective doesn't come without its stresses, obviously. I like to relieve that stress, outside of work, by running. As much as I hate the thought of getting the running shoes on and going out and doing a run, once I'm out there it helps me, it helps me clear my head and recentre myself.
Before I joined the police, the worries that I had for me were 'was I going to be able to do it', 'was I going to be good enough'? As you can see, I'm not built for fighting so that was always a concern for me, being able to get involved. Part of me knew as well that I was always good at talking to people. I'm very good at talking people down and calming a situation down, so for me the biggest worry was that I wasn't going to be able to cope with that or deal with it but yeah thankfully the police is a big family so you've always got back up and your friends next to you.
My friends and family, their thoughts about me being a detective. My wife, I know she is very proud, and I know my parents were very, very proud - they've both passed away now.
When I joined the police I think always wanted to become a detective, that was the end game for me. For me, it's that job satisfaction, to know that I have, as cliché as it sounds, genuinely made a difference to somebody, particularly in the world of child protection. You are, I am, helping the most vulnerable people.
In my time of being a detective, there is one particular case that I deployed to a murder scene which was two best friends that had got into a fight and one of the two lads had picked up a knife and he had stabbed his friend, and it proved to be fatal. Deploying to that at four in the morning, it was really hard because, as much as you try and distance your personal life from work, I started to think about me and my best friend growing up and thinking 'how could this even happen'? As I said, unfortunately, one of the lads died and the other one was arrested for murder so it didn't just destroy one family it destroyed two families, and in that single moment of madness everything came crumbling down for everyone involved with those two young people. I'm not ashamed to admit that I went home and I cried. Just that association that I had with seeing that scene, which was horrific, and linking it to me and my childhood best friend. It was quite an odd one because I never thought that kind of thing would but I think that was the first time in a job that I attended that I did that link between the incident and something personal to do with me and I think that's why I found it so difficult.
I remember, and I'm sorry if I'm going on a bit, but I remember one particular job in child protection, this is another job that sticks with me, this young lad, 11 years old, and he was covered in bruises where his mum had being doing some really horrible things to him and I said to him 'right, I'm going to help you, you're not going home, you're coming with me' and he said 'thank you'. That resonates every single day, whenever I think of a job to do with any kind of abuse against a child that sticks with me and I know that's why I'm doing this role and that's why I'm doing this job, and that's what makes it so rewarding - the fact that I can help the most vulnerable people that haven't got a voice a lot of the time and I can take them away from a situation and I can send them on to, hopefully, better things.
If you're thinking of becoming a detective then you know that you'll be going into a role where you'll be helping people and it is that whole cliche of 'I wanted to join the police to help people', that's why I joined the police. That happens every single day that I'm helping people, every single day, and that's rewarding. So anybody that wants to join the police as a detective, if you feel you want to do it then yeah, absolutely go for it.