Northumbria Officers Nominated for National Bravery Award
Two Northumbria Police officers have been nominated for a prestigious Police Bravery Award after they were attacked by a distressed man who used their own Taser on them.
PCs Hailey Routledge and Paul Rowell have been nominated for an award at the 24th Police Bravery Awards in London on 18 July 2019. The awards are held by the Police Federation of England and Wales and sponsored by Police Mutual to recognise police officers who perform outstanding acts of bravery while on or off duty.
Mental health professionals were called in to speak to a mature student who was acting aggressively on a university campus. PCs Routledge and Rowell arrived to ensure he did not become violent. When the man was told he would have to be held by mental health professionals, tensions boiled over and he tried to flee.
In order to protect the male and members of the wider public, the officers prevented him from leaving and a violent struggle ensued, during which he grabbed PC Rowell's Taser and discharged it, embedding one of the Taser's barbs in PC Rowell's hand. During the struggle, PC Routledge was pushed to the ground, fracturing her kneecap. Despite being in significant pain, both officers continued to attempt to subdue the man. He delivered a string of shocks to both officers, but despite this they both refused to let go and, with the assistance of a member of university staff, they eventually managed to subdue the man without any injury to any other person.
John Perks, Chief Executive Officer of Police Mutual, said: "Police Mutual is very proud to be supporting the Police Bravery Awards for the 11th consecutive year. To all of you who have been nominated, be rightly proud of yourselves and your achievements. When it mattered most, you stepped up. You proved that your commitment to keeping the public safe did not waver, even when tested in the most trying of circumstances. At Police Mutual, my colleagues and I are deeply honoured to be able to show our appreciation for your bravery in keeping us safe. We hope that we can continue to play our part in helping improve the lives of the police family."
Inspector Jim Gray, Chairman of Northumbria Police Federation, said "The bravery and professionalism shown by both Constables Routledge and Rowell, whilst dealing with a violent individual who was posing a risk to both himself and the public, even after both officers had sustained significant injuries, continuing to place themselves in harm's way to protect others, is in the finest traditions of Northumbria Police. They showed bravery in dangerous circumstances and we are very proud of them."