Police officer stabbed in ‘frenzied’ machete attack

Leyton no insurance van
Officers suspected the van was being driven without insurance

A police officer was stabbed in a “frenzied” machete attack as he tried to stop a van in east London.

The PC – described by colleagues as “amazing” – managed to Taser his attacker while being stabbed in the head and body.

He is in hospital with multiple injuries but the Met say he will recover.

A man, aged in his 50s, was arrested at the scene in Leyton on suspicion of causing grievous bodily harm.

Det Ch Supt Richard Tucker described the attack, which happened shortly after midnight, as “frenzied, unprovoked and shocking”.

The uniformed officers suspected the van was being driven without insurance when they tried to stop it at the junction between Coopers Lane and Leyton High Road.

When they spoke to the driver he became “quite aggressive” then returned to his van before “a violent struggle ensued”, Det Ch Supt Tucker said.

The injured PC is a patrol officer who has been with the Met for about 10 years.

Det Ch Supt Tucker said: “He told me he was OK but that’s the type of character he is.”

Muhammad Faisal, who lives nearby, said he was woken up by the commotion outside his flat and “saw someone lying on the road” with a police uniform beside him.

“They were providing him assistance to his head,” he said.

“We didn’t see the wound, but we saw a lot of blood.”

Mr Faisal, a minicab driver, said he then saw the suspect being held face down on the floor before he was taken away in a police van.

“All this time they were providing first aid [to the officer], or trying to stop the bleeding and giving him CPR,” he said.

Mr Faisal said the officer began to move and speak to colleagues “after about five to seven minutes” but he initially feared he “had lost his life”.

Insp Julia James said: “This was a sudden and brutal attack on a uniformed officer carrying out their duties.

“What began as a routine vehicle stop has transformed very quickly and unexpectedly into an unprovoked attack with a weapon.”

In the wake of the attack, pictures posted on social media showed a heavy police presence in the Leyton area.

The van stopped by the officers has been taken away from the street for forensic examination.

Home Secretary Priti Patel tweeted she was “absolutely horrified by the shocking stabbing”, while Sadiq Khan sad he was “utterly appalled by this sickening attack”.

“This was an attack on a police officer, who showed tremendous bravery by continuing to defend others even whilst being attacked himself,” London’s mayor said.

Ken Marsh, chairman of the Met Police Federation, said it was “horrific news”.

“Police officers should be going home at the end of their shifts, not to hospital,” he said.

The Met has urged witnesses to contact them.

Source: bbc.co.uk

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