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Kent Police officers kicked, bitten and headbutted in day of violent attacks on county's streets

Police are facing a wave of violence on the streets - with officers bitten, kicked and spat on during eight assaults in one day.

Kent Police has catalogued a shameful series of violent attacks on bobbies going about their business in towns across Kent during a 24-hour period.

Police are being attacked on the streets of Kent
Police are being attacked on the streets of Kent

The first incident saw an officer spat at by a suspect when they responded to an altercation in Addison Road, Tunbridge Wells , shortly after 1am on Monday.

Two hours later, an officer who attended a report of a distressed woman in Castle Street, Canterbury , had a phone thrown at him, before being kicked, verbally abused and having a glass of water poured over him.

In the first two of four incidents in Thanet that day, two officers were assaulted after being called to a disturbance in Zion Place in Margate at 10.10am. One officer was spat at and another was kicked in the leg.

An officer in Medway was then pushed over by a fleeing suspect, whose car had been stopped by a patrol in Thorold Road, Chatham , at around 2pm.

Another PC was kicked twice in the leg as he arrested a woman for a public order offence in a shop in Grosvenor Road, Tunbridge Wells, shortly after 2pm.

Chief Constable Alan Pughsley
Chief Constable Alan Pughsley

In the final incident of the day, two more Thanet officers were assaulted in Margate High Street at 8.50pm after being called to a report of an altercation.

One of the officers who attended was headbutted and then bitten on the leg. Another officer who took a teenage girl to hospital was bitten on the hand later that evening.

Kent Police Chief Constable Alan Pughsley said: "I continue to be appalled by the level of assaults that are being experienced by my officers whilst they simply try to do their jobs. All assaults, whatever the circumstances, remain completely unacceptable.

"Policing is dangerous, it carries risk, it always has and sadly it always will, but there will never be an acceptance on my part that assaults just "go with the job". I will fight every step of the way to see those that are intent on causing my officers harm pay for their crimes."

Statistics released earlier this year showed a 45% increase in assaults on all emergency workers in Kent between March and May 2020 compared to the same period in 2019, up from 245 to 368.

Kent Police HQ, Sutton Road, Maidstone. Picture: Andy Payton
Kent Police HQ, Sutton Road, Maidstone. Picture: Andy Payton

Last month, the Government announced people who are convicted of assaulting emergency workers will face tougher sentences of up to two years in jail.

Following the eight assaults on officers on Monday:

  • Cosmin Ghiran, 38, of Addison Road, Tunbridge Wells, has been charged with assaulting an emergency worker and damaging a police van following the incident in Addison Road, Tunbridge Wells.
  • A 20-year-old woman was arrested and bailed in connection with the incident in Castle Street, Canterbury.
  • A 26-year-old man was arrested and bailed following the assaults in Zion Place, Margate.
  • A 20-year-old man was arrested in connection with the assault in Thorold Road, Chatham.
  • An 18-year-old woman was arrested and bailed following the incident in Grosvenor Road, Tunbridge Wells.
  • A 17-year-old girl was arrested and bailed in connection with the assaults on officers in Margate High Street and the QEQM Hospital.

To get the latest updates in ongoing cases, police appeals and criminals put behind bars, click here

Read more: All the latest news from Kent

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