Hampshire chief inspector hits out at ‘shocking’ example of assaults officers face everyday

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A SENIOR police officer has hit out at the actions of Daniel Varndell in carrying out multiple assaults.

His comments come after Varndell was jailed for spitting at police, threatening security with a screwdriver and throwing water over a nurse.

Chief Inspector Chris White

Chief Inspector Chris White

Chief Inspector Chris White, from Hampshire police, said: ‘This case is a shocking example of what our officers and staff are faced with every day when they come to work.

‘The defendant in this case, Daniel Varndell, repeatedly assaulted a number of officers and staff from different departments within the force with no regard whatsoever for the impact this would have on them.

‘We simply do not tolerate this – we take all assaults on our people incredibly seriously, as there is no justification for anyone to resort to violence against emergency services personnel who work hard to keep the public safe.

‘Varndell also assaulted members of shop security staff who, like us, do not go to work expecting to be subjected to an assault.

‘The sentence passed sends a strong message to those who think it is acceptable to treat emergency service workers in this way, and I’d like to thank our colleagues from the Crown Prosecution Service for their assistance in progressing this case.

‘We will continue to work hard to ensure that we provide the best welfare and support to our highly-trained officers and staff, who often find themselves moving towards danger, not from it.’

Hampshire police have ramped up protections for officers, with body-worn video cameras issued to many.

Any frontline officer who wants a Taser stun gun can be equipped with one, under an agreement brought in by Hampshire Police Federation and chief constable Olivia Pinkney.

Injured officers are also cared for and no longer asked to investigate their own attackers.

The force’s work in protecting its staff has been replicated by other areas’ police forces. Hampshire Police Federation chairman Alex Charge said: ‘It’s not acceptable to assault police officers, just as it wouldn’t be to go in a restaurant and assault a waiter. It’s not part of the job and we shouldn’t accept it.’

He said the federation had petitioned government for tougher law on dealing with people assault emergency workers, with the legislation now in place.