Police dog and handler stabbed in Stevenage as they search for robber who is thought to have threatened a taxi driver with a gun
- Credit: Archant
A police dog and his handler were brutally stabbed in the early hours of this morning as they tried arrest a suspect who is thought to have threatened a taxi driver with a gun.
Five people have been arrested following three incidents all within two miles of each other.
Officers were first called to Featherston Road at 10.55pm last night to reports a taxi driver had been robbed at gunpoint.
The driver had driven his cab to the road and picked up a man who threatened him with what police believe was a hand gun.
The driver stopped the car and ran from the scene. The passenger stole cash from the cab and then ran off.
At 1.15am while officers were searching for the suspect, they were then called by a taxi company concerned about a request they had received for someone to be picked up in Rowland Road. Officers went to the street where a suspect ran from the scene and a dog handler and dog gave chase.
The police dog, Finn, and his handler PC David Wardell were stabbed in Denton Road. PC Wardell received an injury to his hand and was taken to the Lister Hospital for further treatment.
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Finn suffered a wound to his head and chest and is currently receiving emergency specialist treatment. The dog is in a serious but stable condition.
Other units went to assist and a 16-year-old boy from Lewisham was arrested on suspicion of GBH, conspiracy to rob, possession of a firearm and possession of a bladed article.
Following further enquiries and searches at a nearby property, a number of wraps of cocaine were found. A 35-year-old woman from Stevenage was arrested and is being questioned on suspicion of possession of class A drugs with intent to supply and an unrelated fraud matter.
A 17-year-old boy from Luton, who was also at the address during the search, was arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to rob and conspiracy to supply class A drugs.
Two people were also stopped in a vehicle nearby and arrested. They are a 31-year-old man from Stevenage and a 36-year-old woman from Luton. They are both being questioned on suspicion of possession of an offensive weapon.
They all remain in police custody at this time.
Chief Inspector for Stevenage, Tannis Perks, said: “While I can imagine the high level of police activity in Stevenage overnight may have caused some concern to residents, I would like to reassure people that a number of arrests have been made, our investigations are on-going and there will be increased high visibility patrols in the area.
“If you saw any suspicious activity in the area or have any information which could assist our enquires I would ask you contact police immediately.”
Anyone with information which would assist the investigation should call the Herts police non-emergency number 101.
Alternatively, you can contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.