Manchester

Wigan detective who exposed child rapist praised

Det Con Cameron Hackett Image copyright GMP
Image caption Cameron Hackett helped convict rapist Paul Hitchen

A detective who helped convict a child rapist who attacked girls as young as 13 over nine years has been commended by his force.

Paul Hitchen, 35, was found guilty of 29 offences including seven counts of rape and false imprisonment and jailed for 29 years.

His attacks involved eight victims, including girls as young as 13 and 15, between 2002 and 2011.

Det Con Cameron Hackett was awarded a Chief Constable's Commendation.

The Greater Manchester Police officer was praised for his "efforts and perseverance" in identifying more of Hitchen's victims.

Image copyright GMP
Image caption Paul Hitchen befriended young girls before going on to violently abuse them

The officer, who is based in Wigan and has served the force for 24 years, handled the case with "sensitivity", especially in relation to the victim who made the initial complaint.

Chief Constable Ian Hopkins presented the award at a ceremony at Hough End, held to recognise "outstanding efforts" of officers, police staff and members of the public.

Chief Constable Hopkins said: "Cameron's work in seeing this man brought to justice is something he and the force should be proud of.

Without his work these victims may not have had the courage or strength to come forward.

Det Con Hackett said: "It's a great honour to receive the Chief Constable's Commendation. Thankfully these victims were able to get some closure."

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