The Metropolitan Police have released the following statement after an officer was attacked with a machete in Leyton, E10.
The officers involved had initially indicated for a vehicle to stop after it came to their attention, having been shown as having no insurance.
A spokesperson for the force said:
‘Shortly before 00:01hrs on Thursday, 8 August uniformed officers in a marked police car signalled for a van to stop in Coopers Lane junction with Leyton High Road, E10.
‘The vehicle failed to stop for police and made off.
‘It was followed briefly by police on ‘blues and twos’ and stopped a short while later.
‘Officers got out of the police car to speak to the male driver aged in his fifties.
‘He then attacked a uniformed police officer with a machete.
‘The male officer was stabbed a number of times but managed to draw his taser and used it to subdue the suspect and protect himself from further harm.
‘The suspect was then promptly arrested by the other officer in attendance.
‘The injured officer, aged in his thirties, was taken to hospital by London Ambulance Service.
‘His condition is believed to be critical but stable. His next of kin have been informed.
‘The driver was arrested at the scene on suspicion of GBH and taken to an east London police station for questioning.
‘He did not require hospital treatment.
‘Police are not looking for anyone else in connection with this incident, and there are no other reported injuries. Enquiries continue.
‘A crime scene remains in place.
‘At this stage, there is nothing to suggest this incident is terrorist-related.
Inspector Julia James from North East Command Unit said:
“This was a sudden and brutal attack on a uniformed officer carrying out their duties.
“What began as a routine vehicle stop has transformed very quickly and unexpectedly into an unprovoked attack with a weapon.
“Our thoughts are with the injured officer and his family, and we wish him a full recovery.
“I would like to commend his bravery and resilience especially as he managed to draw a taser, despite being repeatedly stabbed, to prevent the suspect harming anyone else and to protect himself from further injury.
“My colleagues came to work that evening to protect and serve the community.
“Events such as this highlight the courageous work that police do every day, sometimes having to confront violent and dangerous individuals, who are determined to do them harm.
“This incident highlights the very real risk that police officers can be confronted with on a daily basis, and the courage and professionalism officers demonstrate when doing their job.
“I would urge any witnesses to the incident to contact police via 101 quoting CAD3/8August or Crimestoppers anonymously via 0800 555 111.”
John Apter, Chairman of the Police Federation of England & Wales said:
“This is terrible news. Thank God the officer had a taser and was able to protect himself from further harm.
“A truly shocking incident. My thoughts are with the officer and wish him a full and speedy recovery”.
Kyle Gordon, Met Police Commander for Uniformed Operations: Firearms, Taskforce and Roads/Transport Policing said:
“Our thoughts are with our colleague and their family & friends wishing them a full & speedy recovery.
“We ask so much from our frontline who place themselves between the public and harm.
“Thank you for what you did”
Meanwhile, the Home Secretary, Priti Patel, said:
“Absolutely horrified by the shocking stabbing of one of our brave police officers in Leyton overnight.
“His courage in the face of danger shows how police put their lives on the line to protect us every day.
“I wish the officer a full recovery & my thoughts are with him”.