Shelagh Fogarty 1pm - 4pm
Lawyer suggests Met Police should 'take action' against cop who took down machete attacker
25 January 2020, 18:34
A solicitor has suggested that the Metropolitan Police should investigate "Britain's bravest cop" over his takedown of a crazed machete attacker.
Sophie Khan, who has represented people injured by a Taser weapon, claimed that Muhammad Rodwan was acting in self-defence when he attacked PC Stuart Outten with a rusty machete in August last year.
Rodwan was sentenced to 16 years in prison with three years on license for wounding with intent yesterday morning.
The 56-year-old handyman was cleared of attempted murder over the incident and Ms Khan suggested the judge understood the argument for self-defence after Rodwan's dreadlocks
The Secret Barrister, a top lawyer who hides behind the anonymous title, accused Ms Khan of "appalling behaviour from a member of the legal profession".
Another Twitter user said the comments "constitute misconduct in a public office".
No, they demonstrate the complete opposite. Your tweet yesterday was false, and this tweet is false. Appalling behaviour from a member of the legal profession.— The Secret Barrister (@BarristerSecret) January 24, 2020
Unbelievable comment and expected from an anti police Lawyer!!!— Mjcuk4 (@mjcuk4) January 25, 2020
Some social media users accused Ms Khan of being an "anti-police lawyer".
Mrs Justice Carr, sitting at the Old Bailey yesterday, rejected the notion that PC Outten had used excessive force and described how Rodwan descended into a rage when he was stopped by police for having no insurance in East London.
However, Ms Khan wrote on Twitter she was surprised the Metropolitan Police "haven't started disciplinary action against PC Outten for assault and battery" on Rodwan.
She claimed the officer's actions "were in part found to be excessive use of force" and that the case had shown "there remains a risk to the public by police misuse of Taser".
The incident has highlighted how many police officers come under attack while on duty, with 5,900 officers and staff being attacked between January and December last year.
In a recent interview, PC Outten said: “My taser saved my life. If front line officers want one, they should have one."
"I think I first realised what had happened when I was on all fours in the middle of Leighton High Road at just gone midnight,” said PC Outten.
"Before I know it I can feel something smacking against the side of my head and my head’s getting wet really quickly.
"I’ve got my finger on the taser button keep the electricity cycling and there’s blood literally looking like it was coming out of a tap in my head," he added.
"Then my first thought was, I might be in a bit of trouble, and I had to focus on my breathing to stop my heart rate escalating, blood escalating and losing consciousness.
"If I lost consciousness the taser could stop and he could get back up and carry on."
Detective Chief Superintendent Richard Tucker said he was "pleased a dangerous man is off the streets of London".
Paying tribute to PC Outten, he said: "He did what I would hope the vast majority of police officers in the country would do.
"He had the training, he put that into action, notwithstanding he was very, very lucky that day and I'm very, very proud of Stuart. He did an amazing job to apprehend that individual."
The commander for the Waltham Forest and Newham pointed to a rise in attacks on police officers in the capital, with 16 recorded every day, but said arming officers was "not necessary" to confront the problem.