Over the years Laura has received many letters of appreciation and thanks for inputs or advice that she has given:
Baroness Jan Royall 5/10/16
‘Laura Richards is a brilliant and powerful advocate, especially for victims who have been traumatised by stalking and other forms of domestic violence. Her diligence and tenacity has literally changed laws and changed lives.’
Nick Gazzard BSc Hons, Dip CII, MInstLM 12/09/16 Chairman Hollie Gazzard Trust
“I first met Laura following the murder of my 20-year-old daughter Hollie. Right from the very outset Laura was considerate and knew exactly how to communicate with me and put me at my ease following such a traumatic experience. Laura was able to explain what happened to Hollie in a way that I could totally understand and she more than answered any questions that I had. I felt totally at ease with Laura and was in awe of her experience and knowledge. So much so, she inspired me to drive forward with my work in building the Hollie Gazzard Trust and helping to raise awareness of stalking and abuse particularly in the younger generation. Laura’s knowledge and experience is second to none and I know that she is always on hand to assist me with any queries or information needed.”
Shonagh Dillon CEO Aurora New Dawn 08/09/16
Laura is an excellent trainer and I have learnt so much from her, particularly on how my role in the violence against women sector as a victim advocate is closely linked to understanding the behaviour of perpetrator’s. Her influence on my work has been huge and I highly recommend her courses.
Rachel Horman, Solicitor and Head of Domestic Violence Stalking and Forced Marriage Unit at Watson Ramsbottom 06/09/16
Laura is the best trainer I have come across in 20 years as a lawyer. Her training is engaging, hard hitting and packed with must-know information delivered in a fast paced yet accessible style that grips all who attend.
She is an effective campaigner and activist having changed the law on several occasions and has transformed the whole way DA, Stalking and HBV cases are dealt with. Laura is tenacious, determined and accomplished operating at a level rarely seen yet somehow also manages to retain a sharp sense of humour and kindness which is why victims of the most appalling crimes feel protected and at ease in her company.
DCI Paul Fotheringham, Senior Investigating Officer, Kent and Essex Police 11 February 2013
I write to thank you for your work in supporting the investigation into the murder of Natalie Esack. Ivan Esack was convicted of murdering Natalie Esack and received a life sentence with a minimum term of 28 years to serve before being considered for parole.
Detective Superintendent Shaun Sawyer, Metropolitan Police Service, 21/12/1998
Operation Monarch was a multi-force investigation into a linked series of serious sexual offences…. it was the experience, knowledge and energy of Ms Richards that focused attention on the potential scale of Richard Baker’s offences…Miss Richards work in the early days of the investigation drove many of the lines of enquiry…..Her efforts in co-ordinating other forces activities has contributed significantly to the success of this enquiry…..Within a period of days… Ms Richards identified six other offences within the MPS. Baker has been charged with the five offences identified by Ms Richards. I would be most grateful if you would kindly consider passing on my warm thanks for the professionalism, commitment and expertise of Miss Richards.’
DS Chris Blatch, Metropolitan Police Service, 13/01/2001
‘Laura’s presentation on behavioural and linkage analysis on serious sexual assaults is always well structured, enthusiastically received and is the subject that generates the most questions from the students. From an instructor’s perspective, her presentation compliments the thrust of the course as a whole, the need for relevant detail both for specific investigation and also for intelligence purposes. It provides the student with a practical slant, that until now has been a largely theoretical perspective.’
DCI Allan Aubeelack, Metropolitan Police Service 13/10/2002
‘Thank you for your assistance with Operation Stalybridge, the linked rape and indecent assault series. The person was convicted of the above offences and various firearm matters. He received life imprisonment. Whilst your report was not used in evidence, it was of course disclosed and I feel it had a material impact on the course of his defence. Without it….the evidence would have been considerably weakened. It was also commented upon by the CPS representative in that it was a clear and concise report and I personally found it very useful at police/CPS case conferences.’
ACC Whyte, Head of Operational Policing, Police Standards Unit, Home Office, 11/03/2004
‘I am writing to bring to your attention the excellent contribution made by Laura Richards and to express my thanks to her for assisting the Police Standards Unit to disseminate the Domestic Violence Risk Model and Homicide Reviews being conducted in the MPS….Laura gave a presentation on the DV Risk Assessment Tool kit, which we are highlighting as good practice. Her professionalism and commitment was evident from the outset, and having met her for the first time I was duly impressed. I must highlight to you that you have
a hard working and conscientious person who is a credit to
Mike Head, Probation Programme Manager, Sex Offender / Domestic Violence Units, 22/03/2004
‘….we would like to thank Laura for the time she spent with us and for the skilled presentation – compelling and stimulating.’
Detective Superintendent John Fox, Head of Specialist Investigations, Hampshire Police, 26/06/2004
‘I am just writing to say how grateful I am that you were able to speak at the Domestic Abuse Conference in Winchester. I watched the audience during your presentation and they were absolutely spellbound by what you were saying. The feedback was excellent.’
Detective Chief Superintendent Jim Webster, Force Crime Manager, Devon and Cornwall Constabulary, 18/06/2004
‘I write to express my sincere appreciation for your support and contribution in making the recently held Domestic Violence and Child Protection conference the outstanding success it was.’
Chief Superintendent Cassidy, South Yorkshire Police, letter to the Commissioner, 06/02/2006
‘Laura’s input at the Doncaster Forced Marriage seminar was of the highest order. Her intellectual grasp of the subject was evident and she demonstrated the clear benefits to people like me of how investment in this type of work yields operational benefits. It was clear Laura was totally committed to her important work. She left an excellent impression of the Met amongst those who attended the conference. I commend her to you.’
Kate Mulley, London Government Association (LGA), 01/03/2006
‘I am writing to thank you very much for your excellent presentation at the LGA/Home Office/Department of Health ‘Taking Responsibility and Saving Lives: the New Domestic Homicide Reviews’ conference. Your presentation was very well received and added a valuable dimension to the event.’
DI Mick Thurley, Child Abuse Investigation Command, Metropolitan Police Service, 21/08/2007
‘As a DI in charge of one of London’s busiest Child Abuse Investigation Teams, I am indebted to Laura for her specialist advice and guidance in dealing with a number of cases involving Honour Based Violence (HBV). Laura has always provided me with timely and practical tactical advice, written risk assessments and has assisted hugely not only in the management of specific cases, but also in educating colleagues about this very pertinent issue. I strongly recommend Laura to any SIO dealing with an investigation involving HBV.’