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Man sentenced following assault on Staffs Officer

7 February 2018 Local News

A Burton man has been jailed for two years, eight months for breaking a police officer’s leg when resisting arrest.

Aaran Birks, 23, from Greaves Lane, Hanbury, Burton-upon-Trent, was sentenced to two years eight months for grievous bodily harm without intent at Stafford Crown Court today (7 February).

Sergeant Nigel Roberts was seriously injured when police went to arrest Birks in Hanbury, Burton-upon-Trent following a domestic incident on Christmas Day last year.

Sergeant Roberts, a long-serving officer in our East Staffordshire local policing team, was taken to the Queen’s Hospital in Burton-upon-Trent where they confirmed he had suffered a broken leg which required surgery. The seriousness of his leg break means he has been in recovery since and will not return to full duties until the summer.

Birks was charged with inflicting grievous bodily harm without intent on 27 December 2017 and pleaded guilty at magistrates’ court.

Attending court today, Sergeant Nigel Roberts said: “Unfortunately putting ourselves in harm’s way to protect the communities of Staffordshire is a very real part of the job. My officers and I receive the best training on how to resolve situations peacefully and without incident; unfortunately on some occasions not everything goes to plan and injuries like mine occur.

“I’m glad this incident has now been resolved and I can focus exclusively on recovering so that I can get back to the job I love. I would like to thank all my colleagues at Staffordshire Police for their support since the injury, it’s a great reminder of the support you receive as part of the police family.”

Chief Superintendent Jeff Moore, head of neighbourhood and partnerships, added: “This is a clear reminder that policing requires sacrifice and courage every day in serving the public. In this incident, Sergeant Roberts was helping to keep our communities safe when he was subject to a vicious attack.

“We have seen an increase in the number of assaults on police officers in the last 12 months. This can have a lasting effect on officers, and their families, as they deal with the physical and psychological effects. Incidents like these also impact negatively on morale within the force as officers should never be subject to any level of violence. I hope the sentence handed down in this case will serve as a deterrent to others who think it is acceptable to resist arrest and be violent towards our brave officers.”

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