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Tri-force ACC retires after leading COVID-19 response

ACC Paul Fullwood, who is currently the Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire (BCH) COVID-19 Gold Commander, is retiring after many years of police and army service.

After joining the army aged 17 and serving several overseas tours, Paul Fullwood started his policing career in 1992 with Sussex Police working in Brighton in various uniform and detective roles.

He transferred to Cambridgeshire in 2002 as a DI, was quickly seconded to the National Crime Squad working extensively overseas before returning in 2005 as DCI. He was promoted to Superintendent in 2008 where he spent the next five years managing core policing areas as well as Public Order Commander and Firearms Commander in several high profile events across Cambridgeshire.

In 2013 he was promoted to lead the BCH Major Crime Unit during which he was involved in dealing with more than 60 homicides and kidnappings. His unit achieved more than 3,000 years of convictions.

As the NPCC lead for PIP 4 (Strategic Investigator) he has worked extensively with the College of Policing and UK senior detectives, supporting SIOs, Gold Commanders and future Chief Officers in managing high profile, sensitive and complex investigations.

He has led on several high-profile enquires including Operation Mansell, the 2014 reinvestigation into the murder of 6-year-old Rikki Neave (1994) and then charging a suspect in 2020.

ACC Fullwood said: “I am extremely fortunate to have had such an enjoyable, interesting and varied policing career. I have worked with so many brilliant people across UK policing, some still serving, some retired and some sadly passed away. I have enjoyed every role I have undertaken and I hope I have made a small difference whether that be to colleagues, victims, their families and our communities along the way.”

He added: “I have been fortunate to have been a detective at every rank. Working with so many professional, experienced, talented and inspirational individuals has been one of the highlights of my career.”

The chief constables of all three constabularies that he has worked with as Gold Command paid tribute.

Chief Constable for Cambridgeshire, Nick Dean said: “Paul’s retirement will clearly leave a huge gap; his extensive knowledge and experience will be missed across BCH. Paul’s professionalism, personal approach and leadership style cannot be underestimated and I consider myself fortunate to have had the opportunity to work with him over the past two years.”

Garry Forsyth, Chief Constable for Bedfordshire, said: “Paul is a skilled and highly credible individual who possesses the ability to secure the trust, respect and admiration of the whole workforce and our communities. I will miss his wise counsel, strong values and courage but wish him well in what I hope is a long and happy retirement.

“The fact that Paul delayed his retirement to see the collaboration through the unprecedented challenge of COVID-19 is a mark of his character and tells you all you need to know about his selfless commitment to duty. Thank you, Paul.”

Chief Constable for Hertfordshire, Charlie Hall, added: “It’s been a pleasure working alongside Paul and his commitment and experience has contributed hugely to the success of the BCH collaboration.  He should be very proud of all that he has achieved in policing and leaves big shoes to fill. 

"We wish him well and as I told him when I recently saw him he can retire knowing that he leaves a positive and enduring mark from his policing service on so many members of the public and colleagues alike.”

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