NSW Police officers help young girl’s dream to ‘catch a bad guy’ come true


A terminally ill girl has celebrated her fourth birthday by tracking down and arresting a cunning thief with the assistance of the NSW Police Force.

Zoe is fighting Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG, each year about 20 Australian children are diagnosed with this incurable form of brain cancer. Four-year-old Zoe has ambitions to become a police officer, which was only reinforced after meeting NSW Police Force Penguin, Constable Charlie, at the Bear Cottage’s annual Superhero Day last month.

Zoe and Constable Charlie became instant best friends and made plans to meet up last week ahead of Zoe’s birthday today (Thursday 18 August 2022).

Constable Charlie and police friends attended Bear Cottage at Manly on Tuesday 9 August 2022 to give Zoe a birthday present, however, a sly bandit pounced and snatched the present from their grasp.

As the unknown man fled the scene in a white van, Zoe transformed into NSW Police Force Junior Recruit­, Constable Zoe, and led the chase for the thief in the grey hoodie. Hot on the trail of the thief, Constable Zoe attempted to stop the vehicle along Darley Road, however it failed to do so, and a pursuit was initiated.

Leading the officer through the national park, Constable Zoe called upon the assistance of the Marine Area Command, as the thief took to the waters off Manly in his black speedboat. During a high-speed chase through Sydney Harbour, the thief managed to get away. But not for long!

After speaking with specialist officers from the Seal Intelligence Unit on the steps of a nearby dock, Constable Zoe had reason to believe the thief had returned to land.

Taking the search sky high in PolAir, Constable Zoe located the suspect within minutes.

Landing on the hill at North Fort, Constable Zoe rallied the help of specialist officers from the Tactical Operations Unit and arrested the hooded thief hiding in a nearby carpark. The present was located, seized and immediately returned to Constable Zoe.

Constable Zoe’s mother, Huyen, who assisted with the operation, said upon reflection, it was a long morning, but the mission was successfully completed, and Zoe was very proud of herself.

“After the special day she concluded that “It was hard to be a police officer” but she is still sure that she wants to be a police officer in the future,” Huyen said.

“Police have made her dream come true. We will continue to talk about her dreams and hopes regardless of what life brings because it keeps us going and getting through every day.” Huyen said.

NSW Police Commissioner Karen Webb commended Constable Zoe’s courage during the special police operation.

“Congratulations Constable Zoe, your bravery and smart police skills helped catch the bad guy,” Commissioner Webb said. 

“On behalf of a grateful Police Force, I would like to thank Constable Zoe for her tremendous efforts.” 

“I wish you a very happy birthday Zoe and send you a big Commissioner hug.”


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