Derbyshire murders explored in retired police chief's new book

A retired police chief has written an 'open and honest' book about his time with Derbyshire Constabulary.

Friday, 12th April 2019, 11:49 am
Updated Friday, 12th April 2019, 12:09 pm
The Pottery Cottage murders in Chesterfield are explored in Roger Flint's new book, From Cop to Commander.
The Pottery Cottage murders in Chesterfield are explored in Roger Flint's new book, From Cop to Commander.

Roger Flint published From Cop to Commander this month. You can download it at

He said: "This is an open and honest account of my involvement in the policing of this county which not only describes the serious, stressful and sometimes horrific nature of policing and how it can affect family life but also details many humorous incidents and anecdotes."

Following a career in the British Merchant Navy, Mr Flint joined Derbyshire Constabulary in 1983.

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Roger Flint enjoyed a distinguished career with Derbyshire Constabulary.

Over the next 18 years, he rose through the ranks until he became Divisional Commander in 2001, working in Buxton, Ripley and Chesterfield for a decade.

Mr Flint retired from the force in 2011.

Dedicated chapter on Wendy Sewell murder

From Cop to Commander is now available to read as an e-book and a paperback version is due out soon. Both can be purchased through Amazon.

In the book, he describes his involvement with many major incidents and murder investigations. These include the Taddington Dale murder in 1989 as well as the killings of Collette Dafin in Hollingwood, Jia Ashton in Somercotes and Derek Kinder in Belper.

Mr Flint explores the issues in several historical famous cases in Derbyshire, including when police fatally shot escaped convict Billy Hughes - who killed four members of the same family in Eastmoor near Chesterfield - as well as the pursuit and arrest in Buxton of West Midlands serial killer Barry Williams and the 'Bubble Car' murders by Michael Copeland in Chesterfield.

The book has a dedicated chapter about the murder of Wendy Sewell in Bakewell cemetery in 1973, the subsequent imprisonment of Stephen Downing and his successful appeal against his conviction. It also explains the reinvestigation into the case and the details of the final outcome.

Mr Flint, an internationally recognised hostage negotiator, also highlights several armed police operations, including a siege in Chisworth near Glossop where infamous solicitor Nick Freeman, nicknamed Mr Loophole, assisted him in bringing the incident to a safe conclusion.

From Cop to Commander will discuss the case of murdered Bakewell woman Wendy Sewell.

'Draconian cuts'

The book also discusses corruption and organisational failings in the police service and freemasonry within the ranks.

Mr Flint added: "Politics and policing have become intertwined, often to the detriment of operational police independence.

"I make the case that the draconian cuts to the police service and other vital public organisations have been flawed, showing that nearly a decade of ‘austerity’ was unnecessary and could have been avoided by using other options to find funding solutions for the economy."