LBC and Priti Patel MP are absolutely right to hi-light that the law relating to assaults on police officers and other emergency workers needs reform. Police officers and emergency workers protect us and keep us safe, whether on our streets, in our fire engines, in our ambulances or Hospitals. In return, we should do we can to protect and keep them safe at work and an average custodial sentence of just 2 months for assaulting a police officer is paltry. Police and all emergency workers deserve “referee” status - just one single touch and you are off the streets and inside.
But the law also needs reform including the sentencing guidelines. Spitting is a disgusting assault and should be an aggravating feature as it used to be. Also there is no point having the separate offence of assaulting a police officer which carries a 6 months maximum custodial sentence when the 2018 Emergency workers act carries a maximum sentence of 12 months imprisonment. Given DEFRA are now proposing a 5 year custodial sentence for animal cruelty and actual bodily harm even if it is not permanent already attracts a maximum sentence of 5 years, assaulting a key emergency worker in the course of their job should surely attract a maximum sentence of at least 3 years, not one, bearing in mind with good behaviour only half the sentence is likely to be serviced. This at least would be a clear signal that we are backing our brave emergency workers who do so much for us.