Police Scotland chief praises hero Greenock cops after stabbing incident
A top cop yesterday said he was âblown awayâ by the courage of two officers who were left with serious knife wounds after being stabbed in the street.
Assistant Chief Constable Bernard Higgins spoke out after visiting Pc Kenny Mackenzie, 43, Pc Laura Sayer, 39, in hospital.
He said: âI spoke to both officers. They were in remarkable good spirits.
âIâm blown away by the courage of them. I was actually very moved and proud to speak with them.â
Pc Mackenzie was knifed in the neck and Pc Sayer, who had only been in the job for six months, slashed on the arm as they grappled with the attacker in a Greenock street.
The Record understands the officers were called out to assist a doctor who was visiting a man with mental health problems at a house on the townâs Gateside Gardens.
Several backup teams, including three riot vans and several police cars, were scrambled to the scene when the man turned a weapon on the police officers at about 8.45am.
Six officers were required to wrestle the alleged knifeman to the ground.
A knife was seen being removed by forensics from nearby Grieve Road yesterday, along with a training shoe and an item of clothing lying on the road.
Police sealed off several streets around the scene as inquiries were carried out and later confirmed a 43-year-old man had been arrested.
Pc McKenzie was being treated for a serious neck injury at the Queen Eli zabeth University Hospital after being transferred from Inverclyde Royal Hospital yesterday.
Pc Sayer, who is understood to have just started her probation with the police, was being treated for an upper arm injury in Inverclyde.
Their alleged attacker was also being treated in hospital for minor injuries .
A source said: âThe alleged perpetrator has mental health problems and demanded a doctor visit him at his home. The doctor refused to go without police.
âThe male officer was struck near an artery and lost a lot of blood.â
Itâs understood the alleged attacker was knocked down by back-up colleagues scrambled to the scene in a car as he tried to flee the scene.
A police source said his colleagues were in a âpretty bad wayâ. They added: âKenny has been a cop for about five or six years but La ura is quite new to the job.
âWhile this type of incident wouldâve come as a surprise to any officer, itâll have been a huge shock to her.
âThe next two officers called to the scene saw the attacker trying to escape as they got there, they gave chase in the car and ran him over before detaining him.
âEveryone is thinking of them and hoping for the best for them.
âWe know itâs a dangerous job but you donât think when you leave the house in the morning youâre going to come home with life-changing injuries.â
Residents of the usually quiet area told of their shock at watching the incident unfold yesterday.
Alexander Hamilton, 63, who lives nearby, said: âI saw a couple of police officers running. One of them, a woman, had a bandage on her arm above the elbow.â
Assistant Chief Constable Higgins said his thoughts were with the injured officers and their families, adding: âIâd like to take this opportunity to publicly praise the incredible bravery shown by these two officers during the extremely difficult situation they faced.â
âThey have been seriously injured going about their daily duties and both they and their colleagues have demonstrated courage and the utmost professionalism both during and after this incident.
âThey receive the thanks and support of everyone at Police Scotland.
âThis incident demonstrates the commitment of our officers to keep our communities safe.
âIâd also like to reassure the public a major investigation is under way into this incident and high-visibility patrols are being carried out in the local area.â
Police said the incident was not terror-related and there is no risk to the wider public.
Meanwhile, colleagues praised the âincredible braveryâ of the two officers yesterday.
Deputy Chief Constable Iain Livingstone, interim chief constable at Police Scotland, tweeted: âIncredible bravery from police officers in Greenock this morning. All of @policescotland officers and staff thinking of them and their families..â
Andrea MacDonald, of the Scottish Police Federation, said: âOur thoughts are with the injured officers and their families. Once again we see how difficult and dangerous a job it is.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon tweeted: âMy thoughts and best wishes for a full recovery are with the two police officers injured on duty in Greenock today.âSource: Google News