Metropolitan Police Federation

Metropolitan Police officers celebrated at the national Police Bravery Awards 2021

Metropolitan Police officers joined colleagues from across the country at the prestigious event on 9 December in London.

Sgt Natalie Markham won the London Regional 2021 #PoliceBravery Award

In October 2019 Sgt Markham – a PC at the time – was stabbed while on duty by Julian Peters, who’d threatened to kill residents of a hostel in Clapham. She fired her Taser at him, but Peters ran off.

Despite her wounds, Sgt Markham and her colleague chased after him and managed to arrest him. Peters was convicted of attempted murder in December 2020 and sentenced to a Hospital Order.

Metropolitan Police Federation Chairman Ken Marsh said: “Natalie realised Peters was a clear danger – it was only her body armour which prevented her from receiving serious injury – and in the best traditions of policing she was not going to let him get away and potentially harm a member of the public. She’s shown real professionalism during what must have been a terrifying incident and we’re extremely proud of what Natalie did that day.”

Also nominated for a Bravery Award were Met officers PC Justin Withers, PC Phil Clark and PC Mark Gunning, who were patrolling the River Thames in October 2020 when they received a report that a man had gone into the river after having slit the throat of his girlfriend’s dog. He had also taken MDMA, stripped himself naked and tried to hijack vehicles.

PC Withers and PC Clark jumped into the water to pull the man out, but the man fought with them, punching, kicking and biting, and trying to force PC Withers under the water.

Eventually an RNLI boat arrived and the officers got the man from the water, although he continued to fight them. They handcuffed him and got him medical treatment.

The other brave Met officers nominated for an award were Inspector Toby Walton and Acting Sergeant Owen Schutt, who risked their lives as they rescued families from a blazing block of flights in March 2020.

They used fire extinguishers to smash their way into the ground floor of the block, forced their way into the flats and ran from door to door raising the alarm, before ushering residents to safety. All the residents were safely evacuated.

The Fire Brigade then arrived and got the fire under control, and the officers were treated at the scene after breathing in large amounts of smoke.

All the nominated officers attended a Downing Street reception and an evening awards ceremony in London on 9 December, which honoured officers from across England and Wales who have performed outstanding acts of bravery while on or off duty.