Posted: Wed 13 Oct 2021
Two officers from North Wales who attacked an armed man who broke into the home of a woman he had previously sexually assaulted have won a National Police Bravery Award for their region.
PCs Richard Shea and Matt Reynolds, who retired in June after 30 years of service, have already received the Fletcher Award for Strength which is awarded annually to one or more officers who have demonstrated exceptional bravery.
Officers from the two-gun response vehicle were called to an address in Llandudno Junction in June last year following reports that a man armed with a gun had forcibly entered a property after already attacking a woman earlier in the night while young children were at the address.
Multiple calls to police suggested he was armed with a machine gun although it was later reported that it may have been a BB gun.
“The risk was still considered very high, given that he was armed, posed a risk to the victim, there were children in the house and there were members of the public nearby. “said Mark Jones, North Secretary. Wales Police Federation who nominated the two officers for the award.
“These officers went straight to the scene as any delay could result in loss of life and I am sure their courageous actions and putting themselves in danger prevented anyone from being seriously injured or killed. “
Upon arriving at the scene, PC Shea, who has been in the force for six years, took the lead and headed for the property.
As he approached the front door, he saw what was clearly a plastic barrel sticking out of the doorway.
He made a life or death decision in a split second and, had he not received additional information that the subject may have been armed with a BB rifle and the lighting was not had not been so favorable, he would have shot the man.
But when PC Shea told him to show his hands, the man ran back into the property.
PC Reynolds discharged his taser, but it was ineffective as the man attempted to slam the door.
After preventing the door from closing, PC Reynolds struggled with the man who could be seen through the frosted glass.
PC Shea helped keep the door open and was able to unload his taser at the man, causing him to collapse behind the door.
A large kitchen knife was then found next to him. The two officers arrested him and removed him from the property.
Their supervisor, PS Tash Doran-Jones, said after the fact: a gun.
“I think their bravery, decision-making, and threat assessment at night not only kept the female victim and members of the public from being harmed, but also avoided harming the subject.”
John Apter, National President of the Police Federation, said: “We are incredibly proud of all the candidates from England and Wales.
“The actions of these courageous officers provide a little insight into the extraordinary work our colleagues do every day.
“These officers faced any firearms officer’s worst nightmare – a split-second decision whether or not to shoot a suspect who pointed a gun at them.
“Despite the pressure they were under, their quick-wittedness and willingness to run into danger meant that order could be restored to a terrified community without loss of life. They should be incredibly proud, like us, of their actions. “