A heartfelt and harrowing account of a brutal assault on a Bedfordshire police officer posted on the Bedford Community Policing Team’s Facebook page has ignited a wave of support, causing the post to be shared nearly 600 times (scroll down for the full account).
Sergeant Phil Boyd shared a graphic and distressing narrative of an incident where he was assaulted by a suspect in Bedford Town Centre, providing an intimate and sobering look at the real face of policing.
In a detailed account, Sergeant Boyd described how the suspect, Ben Noonan, wanted for numerous theft and burglary offences, punched and threatened to stab another officer before Boyd intercepted Noonan’s escape attempt.
In the ensuing struggle, Noonan spat at and bit the Sergeant’s hand so hard he feared a chunk of flesh would be ripped off.
The vivid, emotional narrative revealed the toll such encounters have on police officers, both physically and psychologically.
Despite the severity of the attack and the risk of HIV infection from the intravenous drug-using offender, Boyd’s primary concern remained the public’s welfare and his family’s welfare.
“It’s not the first time I’ve felt like this. I know it won’t be the last,” Boyd expressed, questioning his continued career in the police force.
According to recent statistics, such assaults are not an isolated incident.
The rate of police officer assaults in Bedfordshire stands at 6.3 assaults per 1,000 officers – significantly higher than the national average of 2.9 assaults per 1,000 officers for England and Wales.
There were 1,007 assaults on police officers in Bedfordshire in the 12 months to March 2023.
Responses to Sergeant Boyd’s post poured in from the community, reflecting the public’s admiration for the police force and sympathy for the trauma experienced by its officers.
Phillip wrote: “Just know that you, your colleagues, and what you do to protect others is appreciated.”
Steve echoed these sentiments: “Keep doing what you are doing. There are more of us in society who appreciate what you all do day to day, than those that deride you.”
Ronnie highlighted the bravery and dedication that define policing, writing: “Hope you are healing and it won’t stop you being the amazing policeman you are.”
These comments underscore the gratitude felt by many for the risks police officers undertake daily.
However, the grim reality of rising assaults against the police, as evidenced by the harrowing ordeal of Sergeant Boyd, underscores the urgent need for protective measures and support for officers who put their lives on the line to maintain public safety.
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