Patience paid off for a former WO Carl-Hein Smith of the Cape Town Central police station.Smith waited 25 years to get a promotion and he is finally at his happiest now that he joined the Bishop Lavis police station as a Capt, to lead the crime information management centre unit (Cimac). He started on Friday 1 November.Smith has served as a WO for many years, working hard to combat crime, leading the Cimac across the city. For several years, Smith says he had been applying for a senior post with no luck. That did not discourage him from being a dedicated officer going the extra mile to bring criminals to book. Despite his post focussing on gathering, compiling and distributing accurate information and crime statistics to police management, he still helped to make arrests and testified in court when necessary. He finds satisfaction in arresting, getting convictions and knowing justice is served.In his new post in Bishop Lavis, he intends to do exactly that.Smith says the previous post limited him as there was a lack of manpower at the station. “When I started, we were eight members and there are only three of us remaining, covering a wide area where so much is happening,” he says.Smith looks forward to fighting gangsterism and drug dealings in his new precinct. However, he admits that it is not going to be easy, but with his experience in the force, he hopes he will make a difference.Smith confesses the journey, since day one in the police starting from January 1985, has not been smooth. It is only dedication, faith and eagerness to bring justice to the people that kept him going. Smith says it was his childhood dream to become a police officer. “Growing up as a boy, I feared the police until I saw what they did for the people and that they were seen as heroes,” Smith says. He started as a student constable and wormed his way up the ranks.He says joining the police was not just a job, but a calling.When Smith is not at work, he is an outdoors person, hiking, cycling and camping as well as spending time with his family.Cape Town Central police spokesperson, Captain Ezra October, congratulated Smith, saying he has played a huge role at the station and the community at large. October says Smith worked even beyond their precinct, helping to fight crime in areas like Delft, Belhar and Bellville – working long hours without complaining.