West Yorks - saved public from knife attacker

Sergeant Tanveer Ditta and Sergeant Tanveer Hussain

Sergeant Tanveer Ditta and Sergeant Tanveer Hussain

Two West Yorkshire sergeants have been nominated for a Police Bravery Award for saving members of the public from a knife attacker.

Sgt Tanveer Ditta and Sgt Tanveer Hussain (who was a PC at the time) were on patrol when a number of 999 calls were received about a man being assaulted in a supermarket. The suspect had a large knife and the victim had received a serious head injury, before the offender made off on foot into the local area.

The officers went to the supermarket and after giving medical attention to the victim and securing the scene, they reviewed CCTV footage. It showed that the suspect had walked into the supermarket with a large machete-type knife, shoplifted a number of items before smashing a glass jar over a staff member’s head, causing him serious injury. The suspect threatened other staff with the knife before leaving the shop.

The officers found him walking towards a school nursery, which was busy with members of the public as the school day was ending. Public safety was paramount and without waiting for any other resources they challenged the suspect, manoeuvring the police vehicle into the middle of the road to block it.

Both were immediately confronted by the suspect who pulled out the knife from his jacket. He shouted that he would stab them, before swinging the knife aggressively around and continuing to make threats. He threw the knife at Sgt Ditta’s head, only missing by inches because the officer ducked. The suspect then began to throw bottles of alcohol at the officers.

The officers worked together to perform a pincer movement, allowing them to use PAVA spray before tackling the offender to the ground. He violently resisted arrest, kicking and punching before they finally gained control.

Their brave intervention prevented more people being hurt while risking their own safety.