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West Midlands Police Federation

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Sentences could be doubled for officer assaults

23 July 2020

Doubling the maximum sentences for offenders convicted of assaulting police officers will only be effective if the courts use the powers available to them, according to West Midlands Police Federation chair Jon Nott.

Jon was speaking after the Government launched a four-week consultation that could lead to the maximum sentences for assaulting emergency workers being increased to two years in prison.

“The Police Federation has tirelessly campaigned on the issue of officer assaults. During the pandemic, while other crimes have fallen we have seen an increase in the number of assaults on the police with some of these incidents involving people spitting or coughing at our officers while claiming to have coronavirus,” says Jon.

“The Federation’s Protect the Protectors campaign led to the Assaults on Emergency Services Workers (Offences) Act being introduced in November 2018 and setting out a maximum one-year prison sentence for these offences.

“However, it would seem that this is not acting as a suitable deterrent and therefore these proposals to increase the maximum sentence to two years have been put forward. But if these plans come to fruition we still need the support of the courts if we are to see offenders punished and others deterred from attacking officers.”

The four-week review into the Assaults on Emergency Workers (Offences) Act 2018 was launched on 13 July by justice secretary and Lord Chancellor Robert Buckland and Home Secretary Priti Patel.

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September 2020
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