Suspects 'spitting on officers claiming to have coronavirus' as attacks on emergency workers rise

There has been an 'upward trend' in the number of attacks on emergency workers during lockdown, new figures have revealed.

By Daniel Sheridan
Friday, 22nd May 2020, 3:36 pm

Attacks on emergency workers have risen by 14% - a statistic the National Police Chief's Council called 'counter intuitive since traditionally much of these assaults tend to alcohol-related and, with the closure of the night-time economy, we might have expected them to fall'.

The latest figures cover the four week period to ending 10th May 2020 and are compared with the equivalent four week period in 2019.

The NPCC said it is thought the 14% rise 'may be driven by increases in common assaults on police constables, including suspects spitting on officers while claiming to be infected with Covid-19'.

Sign up to our daily newsletter


As previously reported, the police in England and Wales recorded a total of 154,812 Covid-19 related incidents in the four weeks to the May 10.

This includes incidents where officers have proactively offered advice to people, responded to reports from the members of the public about breaches of the regulation by others and offences where criminals 'have sought to take advantage of the pandemic to commit a crime'.

Overall crime has fallen by a quarter during lockdown, it was revealed.

The NPCC said 'the reductions have been seen in high volume crimes such as burglary, vehicle-related theft and shoplifting.'

A message from the Editor:

Thank you for reading this story on our website. These are challenging times but the team at the Yorkshire Evening Post need your support more than ever in the weeks ahead.

While I have your attention, I also have an important request to make of you. In order for us to continue to provide high quality and trusted local news on this free-to-read site, I am asking you - wherever possible and providing it is safe for you to do so - to also please purchase a copy of our newspaper.

Inevitably falling advertising revenues will start to have an impact on local newspapers and the way we continue to work during this period of uncertainty. So the support of our readers has never been more important as we try to make sure that we keep you connected with the city you live in during this time. But being your eyes and ears comes at a price. We need your support more than ever to buy our newspapers during this crisis.

Our team of trusted reporters are working incredibly hard behind the scenes - from kitchen tables and spare bedrooms - to look at how we can do this and your continued support to the YEP will help to protect its viability in the days and weeks ahead.

For more details on our subscription offers please visit, email [email protected] or call us on 0330 4033004

Thank you

Laura Collins