Over 700 Assaults Reported on Devon & Cornwall Police Officers

Over 700 Assaults Reported on Devon & Cornwall Police Officers

Police Officers in Devon & Cornwall have reported over 700 assaults whilst conducting their day to day duties.

Recent figures released by the Home Office have shown that between April 2017 and March 2018, 715 assaults were recorded by the force.

Of the 715, 189 of these assaults caused injury to the police officer.  It is the first time that injuries resulting from an assault on a police officer has been recorded separately.

John Apter, chairman of the Police Federation of England & Wales said:

“This is an issue I feel passionately about and I have long campaigned to have it addressed. Any attack on a police officer is unacceptable.”

“And while I am glad that the ONS and the Home Office are improving their data collation regarding assaults on police officers I do not believe that these figures represent anywhere near the true picture of the level of violence our members face on a daily basis.”

“Steps have been taken to improve the quality of the data, however there is still work to be done to ensure that all incidents are accurately recorded so a true picture can be obtained.”

Extensive Prison Sentences

For those who feel that it is acceptable to assault a police officer or an emergency worker the new Assaults on Emergency Workers Bill is due to be brought in, in Autumn 2018.

The bill will take into consideration whether the offender has assaulted a police officer or emergency worker and could lead to tougher sentences for the offenders.

A move that is welcomed by the National Chief’s Council lead on wellbeing, Chief Constable Andy Rhodes, who said:

“All too often police officers and police staff are subjected to assaults and threats.”

“While the severity of such attacks changes, the impact upon society does not.

“It is never acceptable to assume that assaults upon police officers and police staff should be tolerated – they are not simply ‘part of the job’.

“Colleagues suffer not only physical injuries, but the psychological effects. Many find the return to frontline duties after being assaulted particularly challenging or traumatic.

“We are optimistic that the Assaults on Emergency Workers Bill, when introduced, will go some way to protecting our staff”.

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