NABIS Lead Forensic Scientist Receives Police Commendation
19th May 2015
The Lead Forensic Scientist for NABIS - the National Ballistics Intelligence Service - has received a commendation from the country's biggest police force.
Martin Parker, who has worked for NABIS for more than eight years, was honoured by the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) at a special ceremony in London recently.
He joined several other officers and police staff receiving commendations for their outstanding work.
The award was handed over by Chief Superintendent Mike Gallagher in the capital.
Martin was commended for his work on a case involving a man who wanted to use a 0.45 ACP self-loading pistol for the humane dispatch of wild boar. The scientist gave advice to the MPS Firearms Licensing unit that this weapon was entirely unsuitable for the purpose requested. The individual appealed the decision to the crown court where the Judge ruled in favour of the Met Police.
In his summing up the Judge praised the MPS Firearms Licensing department for the way in which it had dealt with the application, adding that the expert evidence of the NABIS Scientist and the Forestry Commission expert had been compelling.
Martin said: "This was an important case, as there has been concern that the provision of handguns for humane dispatch of animals is being used to obtain weapons that are totally unsuited to this purpose."
Martin's role at NABIS means that he oversees scientific issues for the four forensic hubs responsible for providing intelligence on all aspects of the criminal use of firearms in the UK. He also acts as the technical consultant to the Firearms & Explosives Licensing Working Group.
He worked in the chemical industry for two years, before being employed as a firearms examiner with the Home Office Forensic Science Service in 1987.
In 1995 Martin joined the National Training Centre for Scientific Support, training Crime Scene Investigators (CSIs) in all aspects of forensic science, as well as running the Crime Scene Manager and Co-ordinator courses. Subsequently, he joined Cumbria Constabulary as the Scientific Support Manager; this role having overall responsibility for the CSIs, fingerprint bureau, photography and covert surveillance unit.
In early 2006, he was seconded to the DNA unit at the Interpol General Secretariat in Lyon, before returning to the UK to take up his current post in November 2006.
Detective Chief Superintendent Jo Chilton is Head of NABIS. She added: "I am pleased that Martin's excellent work has been recognised by the Metropolitan Police. His expert evidence in court cases and his assistance to forces across the UK is invaluable. I would like to praise the hard work of Martin and the teams across the NABIS hubs."