A TEENAGE true crime fan who has been treated for a rare cancer has been granted her greatest wish — to solve a ‘murder’ with the help of the police.
Victoria Brown, 14, spent time watching programmes and listening to podcasts about crime during treatment for acute myeloid leukaemia.
It fostered an ambition to become a detective — which turned into reality for a day thanks to Wiltshire Police’s Brunel Major Crime Unit and Make-A-Wish Foundation UK.
Victoria became a detective superintendent — known as ‘The Boss’ — complete with her own mug.
First she was briefed about a report that a man’s body had been found dumped on a nearby farm.
Then she radioed the police officer who had been dispatched to the scene to get further details.
Next, she was whizzed to the scene herself by police car to take statements from witnesses and be briefed by the crime scene investigation’s officer.
Victoria was then joined by her mum Cathy and her two sisters as they donned white paper investigation suits and hairnets to conduct a painstaking search around the body and the vehicle it had been transported in.
‘DS Brown’ told her team of specialists to follow up various leads such as the vehicle registration number.
Back at police HQ, she briefed the investigation team and grilled the prime suspect in the custody suite interview rooms.
She dealt with new evidence when the vehicle’s owner turned up at the police station to report his car as stolen, and finally got a confession before charging the suspect and reading him his rights.
Victoria then held a press conference with police colleagues playing the roles of national and local reporters.
Afterwards, she was given a chief constable’s citation for being such a good cop by Det Ch Supt Darren Hannant, who had masterminded the day with his colleague Det Insp Phil Walker.
Victoria, who chose to go on her wish once her treatment had finished, said: ‘It’s just been an amazing day. I loved it and definitely still want to be a detective.’
Mum Cathy added: ‘The day was something that Victoria was really looking forward to because she knew it was a once-in-a-lifetime thing.
‘Wiltshire Police went above and beyond to set up this whole scenario for Victoria and so many of the team were involved.
‘It was incredibly realistic, and we can’t thank them or Make-A-Wish enough for making it all happen.’
Make-A-Wish UK grants life-changing wishes for children with critical illnesses. Since the charity was founded in 1986 it has granted almost 14,000 wishes. Find out more about the charity here.