Detectives in Barnsley are appealing to find anyone who has information about or may have witnessed a serious assault on a neighbourhood police officer on Monday (25 April) night.
At around 20:45 hours that day, the officer was on patrol on Pontefract Road, Lundwood, when he encountered a group of young people engaging in antisocial behaviour.
As the officer attempted to detain one of the men, a violent struggle took place, and he was attacked by six members of the group, suffering kicks and punches to the head and face.
The officer has been taken to hospital where he has received treatment for injuries including a broken nose, damage to his teeth and a suspected broken cheekbone.
Detective Inspector Mark Cockayne, senior investigating officer, said:
“Three men from Barnsley, aged 20, 19 and 14, have been arrested under Section 5 of the Public Order Act and on suspicion of assault on an emergency worker and remain in police custody at this time.
“An investigation is under way and we are now seeking to identify further suspects in connection to this serious, violent attack.
“If you were in the area at the time and saw or heard anything suspicious, please get in touch and tell us what you know.
“If you are uncomfortable talking to the police directly, you can contact Crimestoppers – a completely independent charity – where you can remain 100 per cent anonymous.”
Dave Baines, Secretary of South Yorkshire Police Federation, said:
“This was a disgusting and feral attack on a brave colleague who has suffered significant injuries.
“This is not right. Police officers are mothers, fathers, husbands, wives and partners. They are sons and daughters. They are human beings who should be able to go home to their families in one piece at the end of their shifts. Not be rushed to hospital.
“We are offering support to our injured colleague and will continue to do so as he recovers from his injuries.”
Barnsley T/Superintendent Paul Ferguson added:
“This was a serious assault on an officer simply carrying out his neighbourhood duties.
“This is an awful crime committed upon an officer, a colleague with a family, who was working last night to keep the community he serves safe.
“As with all victims of a crime of this nature, he is being supported by our officers and the investigation is continuing at pace to trace those responsible.
“I am aware there is footage of the incident circulating on social media and I understand what has happened will cause concerns in the local community.
“We have increased patrols in the area and this continues today (Wednesday 27 April), and I’d encourage anyone who is worried, or anyone who wants to share something, to speak to one of our officers. They are there to reassure you and make you feel safe.”
Anyone with information which could help the investigation is urged to call 101 quoting incident number 1001 of 25 April.
Alternatively, you can stay anonymous by contacting the independent charity Crimestoppers via their website Crimestoppers-uk.org or by calling their UK Contact Centre on 0800 555 111.
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