Police officer scarred for life after bite from man she tried to help

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Police have released images of the injuries suffered by an officer who was scarred for life when she was bitten by a man she was attempting to help.

Pc Danielle Ruzewicz, of Hampshire police, says she was left questioning her role in the force following the attack by Brett Ferre, who has been jailed for two years and four months.

The 35-year-old, of Windmill Grove, Fareham, pleaded guilty at Portsmouth Crown Court to a charge of unlawful wounding.

The incident happened on September 16 last year when Pc Ruzewicz, 36, and her colleague Pc Nicki Wisdom were responding to a call when they saw Ferre with a head injury at Portchester seafront.

The injury suffered by PC Danielle Ruzewicz (MartisMedia/PA)
The injury suffered by PC Danielle Ruzewicz (MartisMedia/PA)

She said: "We tried to then restrain him, and as I went to grab his left arm, he trapped my hand under his head, turned his head and he bit down on my arm. Straightaway I could see lots of blood pouring out of him.

"It wasn't really until I got to hospital and they took the bandage off that I realised quite how bad it was. I ended up with a 6 by 3cm tear on my arm.

"These things have quite an impact on you - my children were affected and I started questioning: 'Is this a job I really want to do, if this is the risk I'm exposed to?'"

#ChiefsAwards Subjected to a terrifying attack, PC Ruzewicz & her colleague still showed great courage & persistence to ensure others safety pic.twitter.com/bOFUHTbWUR

-- Hampshire Police (@HantsPolice) September 15, 2017

Hampshire Police Federation chairman John Apter said: "I make no apology for releasing the images of the horrible injuries caused to our colleague Danielle.

"It's very important the public see the reality of the violence our officers face and the injuries they sustain.

"We must protect the protectors and there has to be a deterrent for those who attack police officers."

He added: "The injury inflicted on the officer was horrific, it is the worst bite injury I have ever seen on a police officer. As a result, Danielle is scarred for life for simply doing her job.

Portsmouth Crown Court (Chris Ison/PA)
Portsmouth Crown Court (Chris Ison/PA)

"The impact of this attack has been significant, not only on Danielle but also on her family.

"Having to wait six months before she knew she was clear of any diseases is something that will stay with her for a long time.

"Police officers should have the protection and support of the courts - I understand that the sentence imposed falls within the sentencing guidelines but it does nothing to support the victim of such an attack.

"The Government must tackle the issue of perverse sentences for those who assault emergency service workers. The rules must now be changed to ensure society protects those who protect them."

Mr Apter, who has been a long-standing campaigner on the unacceptable nature of police assaults, added: "Pc Ruzewicz will have to live with his actions for ever.

"Let's not forget that on the day in question, the officer and her colleague went to help Ferre, he responded by biting Pc Ruzewicz so badly she is now permanently marred."