Three Thames Valley Police Officers who saved the lives of a terrified wife and her three children by detaining an extremely abusive, violent and aggressive husband have been nominated for The National Police Bravery Awards.
PC David Icke, PC Emily Chapman and PC Nazia Hussain suffered severe injuries during the incident in the Milton Keynes area, but they were still able to subdue the attacker during the incident in the summer of 2018.
Back in March 2020, the trio beat off stiff competition from six other outstanding acts of police bravery in the TVP area to win The Major John Howard Award for Bravery – they will now join colleagues from across England and Wales as the Thames Valley Police Representatives at the prestigious National Police Bravery Awards in London
It was in June 2018 when the three officers were called to attend reports of screaming from a property in the town of Bletchley at around midnight. On arrival, the officers could see neighbours were out on the street and could hear horrifying high-pitched screams coming from one of the houses.
Realising they were children’s screams the officers knew they had to get into the property as quickly as possible and rather than waiting for specialist equipment to arrive they smashed their way into the property using a neighbour’s hammer.
PC Hussain led the way up the stairs followed by PC Chapman who was carrying a Taser, with PC Icke to the rear. As they reached the landing, the officers could see a man standing over his wife who he was violently punching about her face and body.
Seeing the officers approach him up the stairs, the man turned his aggression to PC Hussain, and he grabbed hold of her before punching her in the head several times. PC Chapman then discharged her Taser, but such was the man’s aggressive state that it had no effect on him.
She was then forced to use her PAVA spray on the man in a bid to get him to release PC Hussain and to get him under control, but again the deterrent did little to stop the attack.
By now the man had grabbed hold of PC Chapman and was forcing her over the bannister before PC Icke managed to administer more PAVA spray directly into the man’s eyes.
However, the man carried on attacking PC Hussain before the officers managed to bundle him to the ground.
Back up then arrived to help detain the man, and the officers could see the devastation his violence had caused in the home.
Three children were in the bedroom, which was covered in blood and vomit.
PC Icke broke his hand during the incident while PC Hussain suffered a concussion.
The man later received a 16- year sentence, and it transpired he been planning to murder his wife by drowning her in the bath as the officers arrived.
PC Icke said; “We were basically fighting for our lives, and we needed to protect the people in the house already because we don’t know at that point what’s happened to them and the state of their health. We had to control the man anyway we could.”
PC Chapman said the incident would always remain with her.
She said: “It really did get to the point where we would have tried anything to have stopped him, to protect us and the other… I was so worried about him getting back into the bedroom, to the children and wife.
“It is one of those cases that we all feel we saved their lives. That’s our job. That’s what we’re here to do, and it is one job that will always stick in our minds as we did it to the best of our ability and saved them. It’s nice to be honoured by the awards and DC Rob Buchannan who worked on the case was amazing.”
The officers later arranged for Christmas presents to be sent to the children.
Thames Valley Police Federation Chairman Craig O’Leary said the officers showed immense tenacity and courage.
“They saved the lives of this family, plain and simple. This was an extreme incident, and they were up against a violent and incredibly aggressive man who was hell-bent on hurting the officers and sadly his family,” he said.
“Having sustained severe injuries themselves they did a phenomenal job in making sure that this offender was brought to justice. That was reflected in the sentence that he was given by the courts.
“It doesn’t bear thinking about what would have happened if they hadn’t detained the man. We are grateful to them and so proud of them, they are our very worthy nomination for The National Police Bravery Awards.”
The National Police Bravery Awards honour officers from across England and Wales who have performed outstanding acts of bravery while on or off duty.
As nominees, PC Icke, PC Chapman and PC Hussain will attend a prestigious daytime reception and evening awards ceremony in London in July 2021. The 2020 event – the 25th National Police Bravery Awards – had been scheduled to take place this past summer but had to be cancelled due to Coronavirus.
Nevertheless the Police Federation of England and Wales wanted to take the opportunity to highlight the fantastic work of all 94 nominees from across the country online from today (September 24).
John Apter, National Chair of the Police Federation of England and Wales, said: “We are incredibly proud of all the nominees from across England and Wales. The actions of these courageous officers provide a small snapshot of the amazing work our colleagues carry out day in and day out.
“PC David Icke, PC Emily Chapman and PC Nazia Hussain showed incredible courage in this incident. They were injured but still protected a family from a violent man. And what generosity to make sure the children were ok with some Christmas presents. We are so proud of them.
“As a Police Federation, we wanted to make sure these brave officers received the recognition they deserve in the year their actions were meant to be celebrated. And we look forward to seeing them all in person – and revealing regional and national winners – when the time is right in 2021.”
The National Police Bravery Awards are sponsored by Police Mutual.
John Perks, Chief Executive Officer of Police Mutual, said: “Police Mutual is, as always, proud to be supporting the National Police Bravery Awards in its 25th anniversary year. Despite having to postpone the original ceremony, the officers’ courage has never been forgotten – they all showed commitment to keeping the public safe in the most demanding of circumstances.