Off-duty police officer risked his life to end knife fight

PC Dave Byrne standing in front of a police car.

PC Dave Byrne had no body armour on, or back-up at his side. - Credit: Cambridgeshire Police

An off-duty police officer risked his own life to stop a knife fight, with no body armour or back-up present.

Police constable Dave Byrne was cycling to work in Cambridge, during February last year (2021), when he witnessed a fight taking place in an alleyway.

The officer overheard a member of the public scream that one of the two men involved in the fight had a knife, and the other was being stabbed.

With no body armour, radio or other equipment, PC Byrne interrupted the fight.

He took the aggressor to the floor and restrained him, however, the other individual quickly grabbed the knife himself and took aim at his now-restrained assailant.

The officer pushed the individual away and continued to detain the original aggressor until his colleagues could arrive.

Whilst the injured man received medical attention, PC Byrne continued his journey to work and completed his late shift as planned.

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PC Dave Byrne has now been nominated for a National Police Bravery Award as a result of his actions, having already received a commendation at Cambridgeshire Police's annual awards ceremony in July 2021.

He has been with Cambridgeshire Police for 21 years.

Liz Groom, chair of the Cambridgeshire Police Federation, said: "Dave was off-duty with no body armour or back-up and had no hesitation in putting himself in the middle of a very dangerous situation to prevent loss of life.

"His example shows the very best of policing and he is a credit to the force.”