Bedfordshire Police and Crime Commissioner -  
01234 842208
PCC backs the daughter of fallen officer to launch new rule to support officers

The daughter of PC Jon Henry, who was killed on duty in Luton in June 2007, is working with the force to highlight the importance of supporting police officers and staff.

11-year-old Maggie Henry spent a day at police headquarters last week and during her visit a promise was agreed that anyone who is assaulted while on duty will receive contact from a chief officer, to check on their welfare and to offer necessary support.

Officers work hard to protect the public and fight crime in extremely difficult circumstances. Jon Henry made the ultimate sacrifice 10 years ago and it is a stark reminder for the force of the very real dangers officers face when keeping the public safe.

In memory of her dad, Maggie wants to help the force ‘look after our police officers, so that they can look after everyone else’.

The law will work hand-in-hand with the force’s ‘seven point plan’, which commits to treat officers who have been assaulted as victims according to the victims code — the same as any victim of crime.

Chief Constable Jon Boutcher said: “Without question, an assault of any kind should never be considered ‘part of the job’. Our workforce walks into danger when others walk away and sadly verbal and physical assaults are becoming commonplace – but that doesn’t mean it is acceptable.

“Our officers should be afforded the support they need and deserve. This means they are treated the same way as any other victim of crime, they feel valued and that those who attack police officers are not dealt with lightly.”

Bedfordshire Police Federation Chairman, Jim Mallen said: “Looking after officers and staff members who have been assaulted while doing their duty should be a primary consideration for police leaders. The Police Federation brought into Bedfordshire the seven point plan and Maggie's law seems a natural extension to highlight to those assaulted that we care about them and will do our utmost to support them.”

Police and Crime Commissioner Kathryn Holloway said: “I never want another family in this county to experience what Maggie Henry and her family have had to go through. I have raised the issue of relatively low penalties for those who attack police officers within government and am about to raise this subject with the Crown Prosecution Service in Bedfordshire.

“In my view, an attack on a police officer is not the same as an assault on any other member of the public, since police are standing on the front-line between those who keep the law and those who want to undermine it. An attack on a single officer is an assault on society itself and should be met with the toughest penalty possible.”

Maggie’s Law - Looking after our police officers, so that they can look after everyone else