Yobs injure police officer and teen in Bonfire Night attack

Leeds: Police respond to fireworks incident on Bonfire Night

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A group of youths seriously injured a teenager and a police officer in a Bonfire Night attack in Southwick, Sunderland. They targeted officers talking to two teenage boys, causing “potentially life changing injury” to a 14-year-old and leaving one officer with serious burns.

The attack happened on Saturday November 5 at around 10:25pm when officers were carrying out patrols in the Southwick area of Sunderland. 

While police were speaking with two boys aged 14 and 17, a group of teens appeared nearby and began aiming rockets at them, Chronicle Live reported. 

The group launched several rockets, one of which struck the 14-year-old and injured his upper arm. It then ricocheted onto one of the officers, exploding on his side and causing serious burns to his arm and torso. 

Both also have hearing loss and a possible perforated eardrum. 

A firework exploded close to the face of the 17-year-old, but he was not seriously injured.

During the attack, the officers and two teenagers managed to take cover behind a police car, which had its windows smashed.

Northumbria Police said further rockets were launched toward them despite it being obvious people had been injured. The offenders fled when more police officers arrived. 

Chief Superintendent Neil Hutchison said: “This is absolutely disgraceful behaviour and we will not tolerate it.

“Bonfire Night is not an excuse to carry out dangerous acts of violence. An extensive investigation is now underway to ensure those responsible face the consequences.

“This senseless attack has left one young person with a serious and potentially life changing injury to his ear, while our officer has serious burns and also potential hearing damage.

“Thankfully the other young person and the other officers present were not seriously injured. I wish to offer all those hurt my best wishes for a full recovery.”

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Northumberia Police said it was thought the group involved was also responsible for other “pockets of disorder” and asked anyone with dashcam footage in the area of Carlisle Terrace in Southwick between the times of 6pm and 10.40pm to get in touch. 

Anyone with information is asked to contact Northumbria Police on 101, or using the Tell us Something page on Northumbria Police’s website, quoting reference NP-20221105-1297. You can also submit dashcam footage direct to the force’s website here: Dashcam : Online Services : Northumbria Police.

Alternatively you can contact independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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