Armed and Deadly is the first book to describe the rigorous training, black humour, constant danger, the toll on family life and the job’s effects on mental health.
From a brutal upbringing with a violent father, poor school results and a sequence of dreary jobs, Healy fights his way out of poverty through the practice of karate and becomes the England all styles champion.
Against his instincts and family background, he joins the police. After 12 years on the streets of Notting Hill, he passes the tough firearms course and becomes an Armed Response Officer – a Trojan, the men and women in helmets and black body armour who roam the capital 24/7 in three-man armed response vehicles ready for immediate deployment to gun crimes and terrorism.
Shot at, facing knife attacks, chasing drug dealers, crashing cars in 100 mph chases and cuffing villains alternates with coping with teenage suicides, distraught parents, people with mental health issues, rescuing hostages and taking down gangsters who imagine they rule London.
From 2000 to 2020, Healy sees more guns on the streets and, in the wake of 9/11, the rise in terrorism and its consequences – the London bus and tube bombings, the murder of Fusilier Lee Rigby by jihadis.
With triplets and a severely disabled son who haunts him and needs more attention than he is able to give, Healy goes through a painful divorce that leaves him broke, without a car and living in a rundown flat with empty walls and few possessions.
Healy is driven, a rebel who doesn’t take bullshit from his seniors and believes in The Job, doing what’s right, being a good cop and grappling with the paradox that there are bad cops on the take who would still risk their lives for their comrades.
Kevin Healy expresses powerful opinions on loyalty, redemption, betrayal and family as well as police relationships. He shows how the police force works, its organisation, inner mechanics, the continuous training and ‘policethink.’ These life experiences provide him with a firm grasp on human nature and strong views on policing, social services, mental health and life in modern Britain today. He shows how changes in police procedures are not always for the better, how greater social care would prevent more young people turning to crime, and how the right word from the right person at the right time can turn a life around and provide direction.
Healy handed in his trusty Glock aged 57 and a wing of a new police building was named in his honour.
Clifford Thurlow has lived all over the world and has worked as a gem stone dealer, a foreign correspondent for The Observer in Athens and as one of the team translating works from Tibetan into English for the Dalai Lama in Dharamsala, India, where he wrote his first book, Stories from Beyond the Clouds, an anthology of Tibetan folk stories.
Thurlow is known as 'one of the best ghostwriters in the UK,' according to Penny Wark of The Times. His recent books are: Typhoon: The Inside Story of a Fighter Squadron at War, for Wing Commander Mike Sutton (Penguin, 2021); Operat...
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Kevin Healy was born in 1963 into a poor broken home with a big family and violent father often in trouble with the police. He took up Shotokan Karate aged 14. He won gold at the European junior karate championships, became the youngest 5th Dan black belt in the country and the English All Styles Karate champion.
After being invited to take on the job as the chief instructor of the Budokwai, the oldest martial arts dojo in Europe, founded in 1916, he taught high profile students such as Guy Ritchie and Jason Statham.
Healy’s A Step-By-Step Guide to Shot...
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