Northampton PC who saw offender stab officer with samurai sword happy to see colleagues armed with Tasers

PC Gary Liddle saw his colleague get stabbed in the leg in 2014.
PC Gary Liddle saw his colleague get stabbed in the leg in 2014.

A Northampton police officer has praised the deployment of Tasers to front line bobbies in Northampton after his partner was stabbed in the leg with a samurai sword.

PC Gary Liddle says a Taser gave him 'essential protection' during an incident with a violent offender.

It follows the announcement by Northamptonshire Police to equip 100 of its community officers with the devices.

He said: "If things turn violent, we can control these individuals from a distance and make patrols safer for our officers."

A video of the attack in November 2014 was filmed on an officer's body-worn depot camera and shows how PC Liddle's team were met at a suspect's door by a sword-wielding offender.

PC Liddle said: "We were called to an incident where two cars had been extensively damaged by a male with a baseball bat.

An officer subdues a target in Taser training.

An officer subdues a target in Taser training.

"Our enquiries led us to a property where we gathered that the male was inside. We knew he was potentially armed, but perhaps just with the baseball bat. We didn't know and were quite concerned."

The suspect in the property turned abusive and began swearing and shouting at the officers. They attempted to enter through the front door.

PC Liddle said: "What we didn't know was that he was armed with a samurai sword.

"My colleague, PC Rob Monk, got a foot in the door. Then he screamed. He had been stabbed in his left thigh and he fell backwards.

Officers need to react to a variety of situations.

Officers need to react to a variety of situations.

"He tried to deploy his taser but the offender shut the door. It took a few seconds for it all to become real before I grabbed him and got him back to the squad car."

With the armed offender still inside, PC Liddle had to turn his back on the property to give PC Monk first aid.

PC Liddle said: "PC Monk was able to cover me with the Taser while I applied the tourniquets. Without it, we would have been exposed if he had come out again."

Other officers were able to detain the man and PC Monk was taken to hospital.

A Taser.

A Taser.

Yesterday (April 20), Northamptonshire Police announced they would train and equip 100 frontline officers with Tasers.

PC Liddle said: "I'm glad they're doing it. I think it affords us a level of protection in violent situations. We will have more officers trained to use a less lethal option.

"If we can control these violent individuals, we can make incidents safer for our officers and safer for the Northampton public."

A Northampton officer, who yesterday attended her third day of Taser training, said: "It's a good thing I think. I don't always know what situation I'm going into and if someone comes at me with a knife I want to be able to subdue them"

PC Rob Monk and PC Gary Liddle received bravery awards in July 2016 for the incident. The attacker was later sentenced in crown court.