Wigan’s newly appointed police chief has pledged to wage war on the town’s ‘hardcore villains’ and threatened to seize their homes and cars.

In September, Wigan’s District Commander was named as Chief Superintendent Emily Higham (50), of Greater Manchester Police. 

Speaking today, Higham, who previously had the the nickname ‘Dirty Harriet’ in a nod to the Clint Eastwood character Dirty Harry, promised to bring down violent criminals in the area in a passionate call. 

She said: ‘There are those that are out there there raping and pillaging people walking around carrying knives and involved in organised crimes.

For those tough guys? For that, I’ll be putting my belly up against your counter.

“We’re going to attack you.

“I am gonna take all of your assets. I am gonna take your granny’s house and mum’s car. I will also come after you, because you’re a menace to the community. 

Chief Superintendent Emily Higham, 50, has warned 'hardcore baddies' who are terrorising the town: "I'll seize your granny's flat'

Chief Superintendent Emily Higham, 50, has warned ‘hardcore baddies’ who are terrorising the town: ‘I’ll seize your granny’s flat’

Ch Supt. Higham, originally from Norley Hall in Wigan described her role as the police chief of her town as a “dream come true”.

She returned to GMP following secondment as head of the North West Regional Crime Unit. 

Ch Supt. Higham stated: ‘I’ve been born and bred. I’ve never, never wanted to leave. It’s a special place for me because my family and friends live here.

“I have always worked 110 percent, but now I’ll be working 150 percent. Because what I do today will impact my children tomorrow.

“I’ve always wanted to return to Wigan, and Mr Chief Constable has made my dreams come true. I still smile. 

After a 30-year-long career, Ch Supt.Higham was first employed in Wigan by the police as a responder officer. She has since worked in areas like Salford, Bury, Cheetham Hill and Moss Side.

She was presented with the British Association for Women in Policing’s (BAWP), Lifetime Achievement Award in April 2019 for her efforts.

First female female chief inspector and superintendent in the Serious and Organised Crime Unit. Also, she was the first Chief Superintendent with the Operational Communications Branch.

She was in Moss Side when she got the nickname “Dirty Harriet”.

She explained that she was appointed to the Moss Side gun-and-gang unit as a result of her being the first female leader in organized crime.

My husband cried and I remember him saying: “What do we know about guns, gangs and other criminal activities?” It’s the opposite side of Manchester.

“And he said: “Shut down Dirty Harriet! Get on with it!”

“It was an amazing place to work. My husband suggested Dirty Harriet, and they called me Dirty Harriet when I was there.

In her new role, she is tasked with restoring the relationship between the public and GMP after the force was placed in special measures in December 2020.

Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services (HMICFRS) published a damning report exposing its failures around recording crime and protecting vulnerable people.

In April 2019, she was awarded the British Association for Women in Policing (BAWP) Lifetime Achievement Award for her work

For her outstanding work, she received the British Association for Women in Policing Lifetime Achievement Award in April 2019.

A second report stated that the force had been performing badly and was placing the public in danger.

She commented on her task and said that she needed to rebuild trust in communities.

“What I’m trying to do is reassure Wigan and Leigh, and all the neighbouring boroughs, is to say that we have a new procedure whereby our response officers get to you right now.

“If you call Wigan police, we’ll be there in a prompt manner. We will also offer an appointment.

Since the beginning, Ch Supt. The first Greater Manchester domestic violence court, which provided training for magistrates and judges as well as crown prosecutors, on domestic violence and victims’ needs.

She explained that she was able to see the grounding of victims because she had been exposed to domestic abuse work, which resonates with her today.

“There were some crucial jobs there that I thought, “This just isn’t right.”

‘When I was promoted to supervisory role as a sergeant/inspector, that’s when it became possible for me to exert influence.

“I brought in quite many things that are now standard practice throughout the entire GMP and country, and that makes me very proud.

The police have been conducting raids on Wigan in an effort to tackle organised crime. There are also rising tensions within the communities. Ch Supt.Higham appealed to residents to utilize all tools at their disposal to assist the police.

Ch Supt. Hiram said, “I am very aware that some areas have tensions within the communities. A lot of this has been due to the perception by the community.

“We’ve experienced community tensions here, Wigan. When we finally get to the bottom it’s not the way the public saw it.

“So it is all about being capable of bridging the gap and getting the truth out there.

“But, it’s also important to remember that it can be the community leaders or community members who have the voice. We will support them in that endeavor.

“But I believe that any community in Wigan who feels that they do not have a voice, that is not receiving visible policing, or is not being aware of tensions or other issues, should speak up. Because we can’t help communities if it isn’t known about.

“What I see is people or individuals suffering in silence for very long times and then getting a call when it’s really critical.

“I don’t want it, I want people have the confidence and courage to come forward so that we can support early intervention and stop things from getting out of control.”