Police officer receives commendation after confronting knife-wielding man in Vauxhall

A police officer has been praised for his bravery after he confronted a man with a knife who was threatening to stab himself and others.

At around 3.30am on June 25, 2019, the Met was called a number of times by a resident in Harleyford Road, Vauxhall, who reported that people were attempting to break into his flat and one of them was “waving a gun”.

The police identified the calls as a probable mental health incident and on arrival the officers found the resident, Jason Starkings, clearly under the influence of drugs and brandishing a knife.

Starkings refused to allow the officers to enter his flat. Another person could be heard inside the flat pleading with the man to let the officers in.

The officer forced entry to the flat and, after being threatened with the knife, used a taser to subdue the Starkings who had stabbed himself in the chest.

On March 10, 2020, at Inner London Crown Court, Starkings was given a 22-month jail sentence – suspended for two years – for affray.

The Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) found the use of taser was justified to prevent Starkings from hurting himself or others and that no officers had acted in a manner that would require any further action.

The officer, who has asked not to be named, received a Borough Commander’s Commendation.

IOPC Regional Director for London, Sal Naseem, said: “The actions of the PC and the other officers who attended this incident, showed tremendous bravery. Despite the terrifying scene of confronting a drug-influenced man brandishing a knife, they went above and beyond to ensure the safety of this individual, themselves and others.

“As part of our investigation conclusion we recommended the force acknowledge the good work of the officers as we believe it important that such dedication and courageousness is rewarded. However, we felt it was also equally important to highlight this act of bravery publicly.”

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