Injured Sheffield police officer meets Prime Minister after axe attack

PC Lisa Bates
PC Lisa Bates
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A Sheffield police officer seriously injured in an axe attack met Prime Minister Theresa May at a ceremony to honour the country's bravest bobbies.

PC Lisa Bates, aged 32 and her colleague Mark Garrett, 38, were attacked while responding to an domestic incident at a flat in Plowright Close, Gleadless Valley, in April 2016.

Their attacker - Nathan Sumner, aged 36 - flew into a rage and punched and strangled PC Garrett in the doorway.

He then grabbed an axe and chased the officers, with PC Bates breaking her leg as she jumped down a set of stairs in a desperate bid to escape.

Sumner struck PC Bates around her head - leaving her with a fractured skull. He also caused severe injuries to her hand and fingers in the attack before a member of the public intervened.

The police officers were invited to Downing Street for a national bravery awards ceremony.

PC Bates, who attended the event, said: "We attended a domestic violence call. We had no information of who was there or what was happening at the address apart from a female screaming.

"Myself and my colleague, Mark, attended and straight away we were just attacked by this guy at the address, the offender.

"He punched and strangled my colleague, and then PAVA spray failed and then he came back out with an axe and chased us down a stairwell, threatened to kill us.

“And sadly he caught up with me, because I broke my leg trying to get away from him on the stairwell, and then he attacked me with the axe and I sustained a fractured skull, broken leg and injuries to my hands and fingers.”

"You never know what you’re going into really, and police officers up and down the country do it every day, all day long. It’s just one of those things. We’re there to do a job and you would do it again.”

She said she was proud to be nominated for the award, which was won by three unarmed officers who tackled a gunman in Northumbria.

"It’s lovely to be here and be part of this special day on behalf of South Yorkshire Police and everyone else, every other police officer that puts their lives at risk every day," added PC Bates.

Sumner was jailed for 15 years after being found guilty of grievous bodily harm with intent after a trial.

He was admitted to a psychiatric hospital and detained under the Mental Health Act.

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