Police Bravery Awards 2014 - Winner (London Region) Officer in life-threatening Samurai sword stand-off wins police bravery award

16 October 2014

An officer who tackled and disarmed a man who was trying to slash him with a Samurai sword has won a prestigious police bravery award.

With only his asp and CS spray, and on his own, Sgt Stephen Brown found himself fighting for his life as the man repeatedly swung his sword at his face and neck ignoring Sgt Brown’s orders to put the weapon down.

When the suspect swung for the officer again, Sgt Brown discharged his CS spray into the man’s face. The officer quickly moved towards him and while the sword was in the air, he struck the man’s arm with his asp three times. 

On the third hit the man dropped the sword and fell to the floor.  Sgt Brown immediately jumped on top of him and was joined by colleagues.  The offender was still struggling violently before being arrested after the incident on Christmas Eve 2012 in north London.

Earlier that evening, the offender had repeatedly stabbed a woman. After he was detained by Sgt Brown and his colleagues, officers discovered that the bag he was carrying contained an arsenal of weapons. 

Sgt Brown has now won the London region Police Bravery Award at a ceremony in central London attended by the Home Secretary, police minister Mike Penning and Met Police commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe, among other dignitaries. He was presented with the award by Sir Bernard.

Earlier in the day, Sgt Brown joined 65 of his colleagues from 31 forces round the country for a reception at 10 Downing Street with Prime Minister David Cameron as a mark of recognition for their heroic acts.

Sgt Brown said:  “I feel overwhelmed – I feel other people deserve it more and I feel very honoured to have won this award.  I would do exactly the same thing again and it is what every officer would have done in that situation.  The man needed to be tackled there and then.  The woman he had attacked was innocent and unknown to him, he needed stopping.  This is what we do as police officers.  People call it brave but it just part of the job.”


Steve White, chair of the Police Federation of England and Wales, said: “I am constantly humbled and amazed by the selfless acts of bravery carried out by police officers on a day to day basis. For every act of courage and bravery recognised in the Police Bravery Awards there are hundreds more that occur in our communities every day that go unrecognised. Each nominee is a credit to the police service and to the community they serve.”

Stephen Mann, CEO, Police Mutual, said:  “Every day, police officers across the country face incredibly difficult and dangerous situations, acting with real heroism to protect the lives of others. All of the officers nominated for an award have shown great dedication to their duty and remarkable courage. Police Mutual is honoured to continue our sponsorship of the Police Bravery Awards for the sixth consecutive year and we give our sincere thanks to the men and women who keep us all safe.”



Footage of the Downing Street reception and awards ceremony is now available, including a montage of the day, clips of the awards, post award interviews and clips of the nominees at Downing Street.

If you require technical assistance re accessing this footage, please contact Tim Lowell, 07812 975561, timl@glasgows.co.uk

Photographs of the nominees and winners can be requested by contacting andersonphoto663@gmail.com or media@polfed.org

For further information, or to arrange an interview with this winner, please contact:

John Tully, Chairman, Metropolitan Police Federation, 07825 169648