Meet Detective Laura Corscadden, Investigator of the Year 2023
Our colleague Acting Detective Chief Inspector Laura Corscadden was recently awarded the National Investigator of the Year for exceptional policing by the Police Federation of England and Wales. With over 16 years of service, we were excited to speak to Laura about her career in policing, and what in her view, makes a great Detective.
Current Role: Acting Detective Chief Inspector – Crime Manager, Reading CID team
Age at joining: 23 years old
Laura, first and foremost, what attracted you to policing? From my point of view, policing offers the ability to actively make a difference and challenge yourself every day. We spend our prime years in life working, and I wanted to align myself with people and a career that has value and purpose, so I knew policing was right for me.
Why did you decide to become a Detective? I wanted to bring justice and investigate the most serious crimes that come into policing, those types of crimes that caused the most harm in our communities, committed against the most vulnerable persons. Being a detective has always been an aspiration, and it opens so many doors for different roles and specialisms throughout your career, alongside the opportunity for training and continual development as well.
Have you felt supported during your career development? Absolutely, I have been privileged to work with and be led by some really inspirational officers who I have learnt a lot from. Managers and colleagues have supported my development, encouraged me to put myself forward for opportunities and believed in me. It has taught me the importance of valuing and understanding your team and something I strive to do in every role.
You have recently won the Investigator of the Year award, congratulations! What does this award mean to you, and implicitly for your team and our force? It is an incredible honour and a testament to the team and individuals who have all contributed to the work. The team and I have a shared ethos and desire to investigate to the best of our ability for the victims and communities impacted. Thames Valley Police is a forward-thinking force committed to professionalism and ongoing development and it is these combined factors that collectively supported the work and leadership culminating in the award.
You lead the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) in Reading – how does CID work? Generally, police forces have several CIDs for their local policing areas. CIDs can vary in size but are made up of a number of teams that work together to investigate serious and complex offences such as rape/sexual assault, modern slavery, firearm offences, serious assaults, frauds, unexplained deaths and some sexual offences against children. As a CID covers a range of offences, the detectives and staff working in CID have broad skill sets and can specialise in their areas of interest and continually develop. They become experienced in dealing with risk and complex cases. I have had some of the best moments in my career working in CID, when we are investigating a serious offence as a team, racing to piece together the crime, identify the suspect and support the victim. When we have a breakthrough in the case, obtain crucial evidence and get justice for the victim – these are all moments that are unforgettable.
What makes a good team leader in your opinion? I see my role as an enabler, to support my team to carry out their roles to the best of their ability. To set the culture, values and expectations. Understanding my team, how I can best support, develop and motivate them is at the heart of my role as a leader. It is important for leaders to reflect, continually develop and be competent and credible in their roles. You cannot be a leader in isolation, you need to build strong working relationships with other teams, departments and agencies so we can tackle bigger policing problems together.
What makes a great detective? Compassion, attention to detail, a commitment to doing the right thing, tenacity and curiosity!
What would you say to someone considering becoming a detective? Do it, I have never regretted a day in my policing career. It will change your life and there is no end of opportunities. No day is the same and you will continually develop and learn whilst doing a fulfilling career.
Feeling inspired and want to learn more about working as a Detective? If you hold a degree or are in your final year of your study in any field, our Detective DHEP programme could be for you.
Applications are now open, become a Detective with TVP – visit our Detective Constable page today to apply.