South Yorkshire Police Federation calls for harsh sentences for offenders who attack officers

Lisa Bates
Lisa Bates
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The South Yorkshire branch of the Police Federation is backing calls for officers to receive the full support of the law when they are assaulted on duty.

Steve White, chairman of the Police Federation of England and Wales, called on the Home Secretary to increase sentences for those who attack or injure police officers during a speech at the Police Federation's annual conference.

Mr White said: “We see harsher sentences for financial crime than we do for physical assault. The law must not put wealth ahead of wellbeing. And so, Home Secretary, I ask you today commit to increase sentences for all public servants who are assaulted while doing their job - helping and serving their communities.”

Neil Bowles, chairman of the South Yorkshire branch of the Police Federation, said: "Assaulting a police officer or member of staff is not part of the job.

"It is not acceptable for us, just as its not acceptable for any member of the public to be assaulted. It is a crime.

"We have called on senior leaders to take it seriously. We need the criminal justice system to also back this and ensure convictions are punished appropriately.

"Officers and staff work for the public, offenders need to know there will be consequences for assaulting us.”

In April, Sheffield police officer Lisa Bates, aged 31, was injured in an axe attack in Gleadless Valley.

The officer and four others were injured in an incident which started in Plowright Close and spilled out into the Co-op in nearby Blackstock Road.

PC Bates suffered a fractured skull, broken leg and severe hand injuries in the attack.

Nathan Sumner, aged 35, of Plowright Close, Gleadless Valley, has been charged with attempted murder, six counts of assault by beating, assault occasioning actual bodily harm, two counts of making threats to kill, affray, threatening a person with a blade in a public place and production of cannabis.