When Victoria Police Senior Sergeant Breigh Hammet was a teenager growing up in Hampton Park, joining the Police Force was the last career choice on the table. Now, 17 years later, she has gone on to forge a successful career with Victoria Police, and admits that she “wouldn’t change a thing” when it comes to her career pathway and journey.
MILDURA police Senior Sergeant Breigh Hammet is the first to admit that policing was never a first choice job when she was growing up in Hampton Park, Victoria.
While describing herself as “the nerd” of her group of friends, a few run-ins with the law, especially from her brother’s point of view, meant that she had very little love for those ‘on the beat.’
“The majority of my friends left school in Year 10 to start jobs in the building, plumbing or child care trades, and it was never a consideration of our group to join any law enforcement agency,” she said.
“If anything, a number of my friends had been in trouble with the police and hated the profession – including my brother!”
Fast-forward 17 years, and Snr Sgt Hammet, the latest Mildura police member to be featured in the Mildura Weekly’s ‘On the Beat’ series, says she couldn’t imagine a life doing anything else.
Snr Sgt Hammet is currently the Family Violence training officer for the Western Region, covering Mildura through to Kerang.
“It’s my responsibility to provide all police members with training and guidance around the field of family violence,” she said. “I hope to continue to work closely with our external agencies and within the family violence field to tackle a serious issue that, unfortunately, impacts all of us in some form during our lifetime.”
Snr Sgt Hammet’s road to Victoria Police, as already touched on, was far from ordinary.
While Hampton Park is today a large suburb, at the time of Snr Sgt Hammet’s upbringing it was surrounded by paddocks, and a place where walking to school was considered the norm.
“I grew up playing basketball, and thought it was the only sport worth being involved in,” Snr Sgt Hammet said. “I spent all my weekends at the basketball stadium, and this continued into my teens.
“My father was the local footy coach and president, and my mum worked part-time at Kmart.”
Opting to finish Year 12, Snr Sgt Hammet then enrolled in a Bachelor of Biological and Chemical Sciences.
“I even attended the campus open day with the plan of being the next CSI legend of my day,” she said. “Turns out that it’s not like the TV show, and when you graduate you only focus on one aspect – paint, fingerprints etc.
“I didn’t come from a family that could afford for me not to work, or to just enrol in any old university course for fun, so I looked at jobs that paid me to learn on the job – Army, Navy and Victoria Police.
“I was working three jobs at the time, and I coached Dandenong Rangers junior squads, was a supervisor at Kmart and manager at Nandos in Springvale.
“I applied immediately to join (Victoria Police), and within 18 months of completing Year 12 I found out that I was in. I had no previous experience with any government agency.”
Snr Sgt Hammet was soon balloted to spend two years in Robinvale in 2005, and while in the small country town “met a local boy and never returned to Melbourne.”
Snr Sgt Hammet said that during her time with Victoria Police she had been granted the opportunity to live in different areas and meet a large mix of different people.
“I’ve also been supported to raise three beautiful kids while working full-time, and I am now a Senior Sergeant, and manage to juggle a happy work/life balance,” she said.
“The best advice I can give (to those thinking of joining VicPol) is if you are thinking about applying – stop thinking and just do it!”