Murdered man honoured in bravery awards

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A man murdered while trying to rescue a stranger from a violent attack was among members of the public honoured by police for their bravery on Wednesday night.

Deka Kennedy, 29, stepped in when he saw a man punching and kicking his girlfriend near a pub in South Shields. He was fatally stabbed in the groin by serial violent offender Paul Morrison, who was convicted of murder and sentenced to life last year.

Mr Kennedy's mother Jean received a posthumous award on his behalf at the Association of Chief Police Officers (Acpo) Public Bravery Awards in Manchester.

The annual awards ceremony recognises outstanding bravery by people or particular devotion to duty by emergency services staff and members of the armed forces.

Others to receive "gold medal" awards included Derek Armiger of Frome; Jody Miles of Hampshire; Jason Steward of Newton Aycliffe and Howard Kirman of Halifax.

Chief Constable Meredydd Hughes, of South Yorkshire Police, who is responsible for the awards, said acts of bravery should be recognised.

He said: "Each and every day members of the public put themselves at risk to help others in need. These awards showcase some extraordinary stories of bravery and many selfless acts of kindness and we are delighted to be honouring these very brave people."