Derbyshire Police Federation

'I wanted to stop other people going through what we went through'

30 November 2023

A Derbyshire officer has told how a collision involving a drink driver that left his mum seriously injured motivated him to join the police to prevent it happening to other families.

Derbyshire Police Federation member Cam Spowart was just 14 when the car his mum was driving was in a crash with a vehicle that had pulled out in front of them.

While Cam emerged from the collision relatively unscathed, his mum was badly injured and has since developed a number of disabilities that have had a big impact on her life.

“My mum was completely knocked for six,” he said. “I got out of the car fairly okay - the airbag went off, I can remember that - and saw my mum and she wasn’t in the best of states.

“She got lifted out. I had to see all that and it wasn’t the best.

“While we were there the driver, came out unscathed. She was under the influence of drink and drugs and tried to flee.

“Fortunately we had some members of the public there who managed to stop her from leaving.”

PC Cam Spowart joined the police following a life-changing collision involving a drink driver 


He added: “My mum got taken to hospital without me. I was worried if it’d be the last time I would see her.”

Cam said the incident was life-changing in a number of ways.

His mum had a thriving graphic design business that she was unable to continue with because of her injuries, while Cam took on a role of carer.

Life-changing incident

“My mum is an absolutely amazing person,” he said. “She is so selfless.

"Because of what happened to her, she had to give up the work and I had to step up and look after her.

“Two of the disks in her spine exploded because of the crash.

“She developed a number of disabilities such as fibromyalgia, and because of the stress of it all she developed other illnesses.

“Both of our situations completely changed,” he added.

It also prompted a change in career plan for Cam, who had initially wanted to follow in his dad’s footsteps and join the army.

Cam said: “Because of what it caused my mum to go through, I decided to go down a different career path, one that was still uniformed but which meant I could remain home and be there for my family.

“I also wanted to stop other people going through what we had to, and that’s why I decided to go into the police.

“I made sure I got my qualifications, I got some life experience and then applied to the police.”

Drink-drive arrest

As fate would have it, his first arrest was a drink driver.

“No-one knew about mine and my mum’s situation,” he said. “I didn’t tell anyone at training school because I didn’t want to make a fuss about anything.

“When I made my first arrest it did feel a little bit like fate.

“It felt like I had been set on this path, trying to find my purpose, where I wanted to be and what I wanted to be doing.

“We went through the process and he got charged from our police work, it was a good feeling that perhaps we’ve prevented something happening, someone being hurt or worse.

“After having that experience with my mum, to perhaps prevent it from happening to someone else, it felt like things coming full circle.”

Now 25, Cam is an acting sergeant on response, and says the job can bring with it huge satisfaction.

“We have challenging days, the same as any job,” he said. “But it’s those points where we see really good outcomes that make it worthwhile.

“The positives outweigh the negatives. It’s a very rewarding job, and you feel like you’re achieving something good.”

READ MORE: Win great tech prizes in free draw


June 2024