#ProtectTheProtectors: Courts must work harder to hand out deterrent sentences

THE courts must work harder to hand out deterrent sentences to offenders who attack police officers, Hampshire Police Federation has warned. 

Assaults are on the increase at the force, with 1,494 attacked in the year ending in March – a total of 29 every day. 

Zoë Wakefield, Federation Chair, siad: This is really concerning. This time last year it was three officers a day. Now we are seeing four officers assaulted every day. Is it going to be five officers a day next year? Is it going to keep going up and up? It is simply not acceptable. It is not right and it should not be happening.” 

Zoë praised the work that goes on in the force to prevent officer assault and support those who have been attacked. She said that those who had fallen victim have received a lot of help from Hampshire Police, but that the judicial system could do a lot more. 

She said: The Crown Prosecution Service doesnt seem to value the importance when its a police officer victim. They seem quite happy to drop cases at court, or before they get to court, with no consultation with the officers. And obviously we know lots of people, when it does get to court, are given menial sentences that dont really mean a lot and clearly arent a deterrent to stop people from assaulting officers.” 

Zoë said she would work with the local CPS to restate the Federations message. 

She added: Its not good enough. Its not acceptable. And it has a real impact on officers when they dont get justice. They start to wonder, Why am I doing this job?’”

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