Tougher sentences for assaults on emergency workers backed by West Mercia PCC
Tougher sentences for assaulting emergency workers is being backed by West Mercia’s Police and Crime Commissioner.
The Assaults on Emergency Workers (Offences) Act, which came into force in 2018, gave the courts the power to hand down sentences of up to 12 months.
The new proposals go further and would change the maximum sentence from 12 months to two years.
In line with the national picture, assaults against police officers and staff have increased in West Mercia over the past two years.
Data from March, 2020 shows that assaults against police personnel in West Mercia are at a five-year high, with more than 400 offences recorded in a six-month period.
PCC John Campion has campaigned to reduce assaults through his Behind the Badge campaign, which aims to raise awareness of officer assaults, and influence the national agenda on the issue.
He said: “I was a firm advocate of the Assaults on Emergency Workers Act in 2018 and I have campaigned extensively to reduce assaults on police officers and other emergency workers.
“I welcome the move from Government to take this further and send a clear message to the small minority that this destructive behaviour will not be tolerated.
“Violence against police or anyone within the emergency services is never acceptable.
“We need to recognise the long lasting impact that assaults can have, not only on the victim, but their families, friends and society as a whole.”
“I will continue to highlight and challenge assaults on officers as part of my commitment to deliver a safer and more secure West Mercia.
“We must do all we can to protect those who protect us.”
Photo caption: John Campion.