More has to be done to tackle the growing number of assaults on police officers, says Cambridgeshire Police Federation chair Liz Groom.
Liz has spoken out on the issue again after two officers needed hospital treatment on Wednesday after being assaulted in an incident in Whittlesey.
“It is totally unacceptable for police officers to continue to face violent attacks as they go about their duties serving and protecting their communities,” says Liz.
“No one should have to accept being assaulted is part of their job but police officers often say that it is just part and parcel of their role.
“That should not be the case. An attack on a police officer is an attack on society itself and that has to be tackled head-on.
“This was a brutal and scary attack on officers who were just doing their job, and it really highlights the reality and danger our brave and hard-working officers face every day.”
Both officers – one male and one female – were taken to hospital following Wednesday’s incident. One suffered serious but not life-threatening injuries. They are being supported by the Force, colleagues and Cambridgeshire Police Federation.
A 17-year-old male was arrested on suspicion of assault causing grievous bodily harm (GBH) with intent and assault causing actual bodily harm (ABH). The investigation is ongoing.
In 2018, following the Police Federation’s Protect the Protectors campaign, the Assaults on Emergency Workers (Offences) Act came into effect and introduced a sentence of up to 12 months in prison for those convicted of attacks on police officers and other blue light colleagues.
Figures released last July revealed that in the first year following the pandemic lockdown in March 2020 there were 36,969 assaults on police in England and Wales, a rise of 20 per cent. The rise was due, in part, to the increased number of assaults by spitting, with offenders weaponising Covid-19.