A CHIEF inspector has said anyone attacking police and other emergency services workers can expect to feel the full force of the law after six of his officers in Redditch and Bromsgrove were assaulted in the space of ten days.
Ch Insp Ed Hancox’s warning comes after James Bateman, 23, was jailed for 24 weeks just three days after strangling an officer in the Golden Lion pub in Charford on February 8.
He praised the force, CPS and court’s prompt response and added others who attacked emergency services workers would also be swiftly brought to justice.
He thanked drinkers who stepped in to stop the attack and ensure the officer was okay afterwards.
“We are very grateful to them for doing the right thing.”
There has been a 17 per cent increase in police officers being attacked in the last six months of 2019.
CI Hancox added part of the increase in reported attacks was down to officers feeling more comfortable and confident about coming forward but added the minority responsible needed to show more respect to the emergency services.
Two years ago maximum sentences for attacks were increased from six months to 12 with the introduction of the Emergency Services Act and Police and Crime Commissioner John Campion launched the ‘Behind the Badge’ campaign, aimed at changing attitudes and behaviour towards those in uniform.
CI Hancox said: “The majority of people would not even contemplate attacking police officers or other emergency services workers but there is a small minority who need to be reminded this is just not acceptable.
“None of our officers go to work to be assaulted and for them to want to return home at the end of their shift to their family is not an unreasonable ask.
“The act and campaign recognise there is a person behind the uniform and if they are attacked, they are a victim of crime as well – it is not just part of the job.
“Attacks on anyone can have a devastating impact on them and their loved ones and this has to stop.”
At 4.15am on Sunday morning in Worcester Road, Brromsgrove, an officer was punched in the back of the head whilst intervening in disorder where two groups were fighting.
Four officers have been injured in assaults in Redditch between February 8 and 17 and a man has been arrested and charged over an incident in Wythall on January 28 when a police officer was dragged along by a car.