Officer shares terrifying ordeal after being stabbed three times
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A Nottinghamshire police officer who was stabbed while on duty has spoken out about his terrifying ordeal.
Sergeant Dan Griffin was left fearing for his life after a suspect he’d stopped to question in the street suddenly attacked him with a knife.
Knife-carrier Kai Green went on to stab Sgt Griffin three times – two times in the back of his leg and once in the chest – before the officer managed to wrestle his attacker to the ground.
Back-up arrived soon after to help detain Green, while Sgt Griffin was left to try to come to terms with what had just happened and to worry about how serious his wounds could be.
“A lot of people describe it as like being punched but I knew immediately that I’d been stabbed,” he said.
“When you get hit and you feel that pain, it's very sobering. You know exactly what's happened and a whole host of things go through your mind.
“I was determined to get the person though – and thankfully I did.
“My heart was racing but I could feel blood running down my trouser leg and gathering in a pool around my boot, so I knew it was a bad wound and there was a lot of blood loss.
“Whilst I was being led along the street, looking at a square metre of road, the only thing that went through my mind then was my family.
“And again, it's kind of sobering because you don't know what's happening, you don't know what kind of injury you've got, so the only thing you can think about is loved ones.”
Green, aged 18, was handed an eight-year sentence last December for the attack in North Sherwood Street, the Arboretum.
A police officer of ten years, Sgt Griffin admits the frightening ordeal in April 2022 did make him reconsider whether he wanted to carry on in the role anymore.
But the officer has credited the support provided to him by his City Central neighbourhood policing team colleagues and the wider Nottinghamshire Police family for helping him return.
He said: “I was scared to be honest when it happened – I’ve never been in that situation before and I don’t want to be in that situation again.
“It did make me reconsider coming back to work and being a police officer, but to be honest, this is the job I signed up to and I’m not the sort of person to shrink away from that.
“Although the wounds were deep, they did heal relatively quickly, but the psychological impact took quite some time – you remove the uniform and you’re still a person underneath.
“We hear the term of police family and it is true. Everybody has played their role within the organisation to support me.
“My colleagues have been rocks, ultimately. They've been the constant throughout this phased return and me coming back up to full speed.”
The City Central neighbourhood policing team, which covers the Arboretum and Radford among other areas, deliver a number of operations to try and tackle knife crime and other offences.
One such tactic involves providing more of a visible presence on the streets through patrols in targeted areas, in a bid to provide more reassurance to the community and also deter criminal behaviour.
Inspector Ben Lawrence, who leads the City Central neighbourhood policing team, said: "What Dan went through that night was completely unacceptable and no police officer or anyone else should ever have to go through something like that.
"He showed incredible bravery that night to detain a suspect. Despite his injuries, which were serious, he remained with the suspect and was able to detain him following quite a struggle.
"It's not just that, it's the way that Dan has returned to work.
"We're incredibly proud of him and he's displayed incredible resilience.
"He's an absolute credit to us at the City Central neighbourhood policing team and to the wider Nottinghamshire Police family."
After a short break away while he recovered, Sgt Griffin – whose actions have seen him named as a nominee for the Police Federation's national Bravery Awards – wanted to make sure he went back to the scene of his attack when he did return.
He said: “Actually putting the uniform back on again, stepping outside the station, and especially going back to the street where it happened with my team, I wanted to do that quite quickly.
“It was emotional and it was kind of a surreal moment, but I took the time, my colleague gave me a little bit of space, we walked through it, and I’m glad I did it.
“Officers being assaulted shouldn’t be part of the job,” added Sgt Griffin.
“We don’t sign up to it in our job description or anything like that.
“We do put ourselves in difficult situations but when people are deliberately coming towards you with weapons and wanting to hurt you, then no, that should not be tolerated by anybody within any uniform.”
Sgt Griffin chose to speak about the unprovoked attack on him as part of the lead up to a national week of action focused on preventing and tackling knife crime, known as Operation Sceptre.
Nottinghamshire Police is shining a spotlight on the ongoing work to drive down knife crime across the county as part of Op Sceptre, which runs from today (15 May) until Sunday (21 May).
Sgt Griffin said: “I’ve run a number of operations in the past for Op Sceptre awareness week, whether that be knife sweeps or proactive operations, and it is a very valuable campaign.
“I know first-hand the impact of knife crime from a victim’s point of view. I’ve seen the effect it’s had on my family, my friends, my colleagues, and I wouldn’t wish that on anybody else.
“My final message to anyone considering carrying a knife would be please don’t.
“Consider the victims, their families, their friends, their colleagues, but also the impact on you, your friends, your family, your loved ones – they can be life-changing.”