15 September 2020
Maximum sentences for assaults on police officers are set to double as the Government has agreed to bring new legislation forward.
The move follows extensive campaigning by the Police Federation which argued the previous maximum prison sentence of 12 months did not reflect the seriousness of assaults on police officers. Offenders will now receive a maximum sentence of two years.
The chair of Derbyshire Police Federation, Tony Wetton, said: “We welcome this change in law which we’ve been working hard for.
“The Federation’s Protect the Protectors campaign was about safeguarding officer wellbeing via tougher sentencing for those mindless individuals who seem to think it’s acceptable to attack a police officer or another of our blue light colleagues while they are doing their jobs and serving their communities.
“The courts can now issue more suitable sentences for those offenders which I hope will be a deterrent.
“We will continue work locally to ensure that all assaults on officers are properly investigated and prosecuted wherever appropriate.”
More than 11,000 people were prosecuted for assaulting an emergency worker in 2019, according to Ministry of Justice statistics.
This latest change in the law will be the second in two years after the 2018 Assaults on Emergency Workers (Offences) Act increased the maximum sentence from six months to a year.
The new law will mean that when a person is convicted of offences, including sexual assault or manslaughter, a judge must consider whether an offence against an emergency worker merits an increase in sentence.