Officer reveals horrific injuries from attack by 16-year-old youth

An officer from Leicestershire Police has revealed the horrific injuries she suffered at the hands of a 16-year-old she was attempting to detain.

Dec 9, 2020
By Tony Thompson

The attack left the officer needing facial surgery and stitches and she was forced to take sick leave for three months as a result. She is still awaiting further surgery now as the injuries have left her struggling to breathe properly through her nose.

Details of the attack have emerged amid calls for a ban on the use of Taser on those under the age of 18. The Police Federation of England and Wales say such calls do not reflect the violent reality of the “real world” as some children can be “dangerous individuals”.

The Leicestershire officer, who is not being named, had been on duty in the Ashby area on September 12 when she assisted with carrying out a search of the 16-year-old youth who had been detained by other officers in Burton Road due to concerns raised around his behaviour.

The officer told the youth she was carrying out the search on him but due to his behaviour at the time and concerns that he was going to leave the scene, she made the decision to handcuff him.

As she placed a handcuff around one of the youth’s wrists, he then used his free hand to punch her to the nose.

The officer described her face being forced to the side and suffering pain she “had never experienced before”. She said: “It happened so quickly and I didn’t know what had hit me. I just felt extreme pain and realised I couldn’t see properly either.”

The officer, who managed to keep hold of the handcuffs after being attacked, also found that she was bleeding heavily from her nose and her mouth. She was assisted by colleagues who realised what had happened and arrested the youth.

The officer was taken to Queens Hospital Burton where it was found she had suffered from a broken nose, a broken septum, a deep laceration and tear to the left side of her nose and nostril, significant swelling and bruising. She had to undergo surgery to try to fix her nose and also had to have six internal stitches and 11 external stitches to the nose.

Three months on and the officer is now awaiting further surgery as she is unable to breathe through her right nostril and has limited breathing through her left nostril. She also has exposed cartilage in her nostrils as a result of the injuries caused.

She has been working from home and has not been able to go back to her normal duties at this stage.

The injured officer said: “It does make me angry that I was out doing my job and I have been attacked in this way. It shouldn’t be accepted that I am attacked in my job and left with injuries like this that will be with me for the rest of my life.”

On Monday, December 7, at the youth court at Leicester Magistrates’ Court, the teenager pleaded guilty to wounding of a person, namely a police constable. He has been released on bail and is due to be sentenced on January 11, 2021. The youth cannot be named for legal reasons.

NPA Commander for North West Leicestershire, Inspector Rich Jackson said: “This was a horrific assault carried out on an officer who was simply doing her job. The attack was carried out by a person who was bigger, taller and stronger meaning that one punch caused horrendous long-term injuries.

“Full support has been and remains in place for the officer concerned who has bravely shared her story to raise awareness of an issue which needs to be stopped.”

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