THOMAS James Lindsay
Traffic Officer, Traffic Safety Service, Ministry of Transport.
Queen's Gallantry Medal
On the evening of 7th January 1990 Traffic Officer Thomas, accompanied by a Senior Traffic Sergeant, was on duty in a patrol vehicle at Kimbell, South Canterbury. Traffic Officer Thomas had reason to stop the driver of a motor vehicle, which unknown to both officers had recently been stolen and the driver armed. It was only after Traffic Officer Thomas had left the patrol vehicle that he became aware of the other driver aiming a .303 rifle at him. From where he was standing Traffic Officer Thomas could see that the rifle bolt was not quite pushed home and he took the opportunity to try and reason with the driver and perhaps disarm him. The armed man however, became agitated and moved out of range of the headlights into the darkness making further approaches to him difficult.
At this point Traffic Officer Thomas and the Senior Traffic Sergeant decided to get away from the area. As the patrol car was moving away a shot was fired by the offender, which narrowly missed Traffic Officer Thomas and hit the other officer. A second shot through the rear window again hit the Senior Sergeant in the head. Traffic Officer Thomas travelled a short distance whereupon he stopped to assess his colleague's needs, and radio for medical assistance. He then proceeded to Fairlie where an ambulance and medical help was waiting to assist the Senior Sergeant who suffered horrific facial injuries. The offender was later apprehended by the New Zealand Police. Traffic Officer Thomas, in dealing with a dangerous situation, displayed exemplary courage and his prompt actions saved the life of his fellow officer.
Queen;s Gallantry Medal