One of our courageous officers has won a 2021 Police Bravery Award after he tackled a knifeman who stabbed an emergency services worker in the heart.
PC Mat Evans received the Midlands Region award at the Police Federation awards ceremony on 9 December 2021, which recognises heroic police officers from around the country.
PC Evans, who is part of our Birmingham city centre team and has been with WMP for 22 years, was off duty when he spotted the attack near the Royal London Hospital, in Whitechapel in October 2019.
He bravely put himself between the victim − who’d been stabbed in the chest − and the attacker before pulling out his warrant card to show he was a police officer.
Attacker Mohammed Uddin ran off but PC Evans chased him down, rugby tackled him to the floor and tried to prise the knife from his grip.
A crowd gathered to watch and film the scuffle on mobile phones − and shockingly some even began kicking and punching PC Evans as he tried detaining the man.
Minutes later officers from the Met Police arrived to help.
PC Evans was bitten on the hand by Mohammed Uddin and needed hospital treatment, but later that day he went on to complete a witness interview which helped secure the conviction of Uddin for wounding with intent.
Uddin was jailed at The Old Bailey in March 2020, for 12 years and nine months. He had previous convictions for robbery and possessing knives in public.
The victim of the knife attack thankfully survived after emergency surgery at the Royal London Hospital.
PC Evans, who was nominated for the 2021 Police Bravery Award by the West Midlands Police Federation, has also been recognised for his bravery with a Met Police Assistant Commissioner’s Award.
Speaking as he received that award, PC Evans said: “Incidents like this make you realise being a police officer isn’t a job, it’s a state of mind you can never turn off, even when not at work.
“When I saw the guy being stabbed, for me there wasn’t a choice to make; I had to stop him before he killed someone.”
West Midlands Police Chief Constable Dave Thompson, said: “Matt is a cracking officer.
“He is a big presence in Birmingham city centre and an outstanding award-winner for this selfless act. He is one of our finest.”
Jon Nott, chair of West Midlands Police Federation, said: “PC Evans went above and beyond to ensure the offender was captured.
“He did more than many people would have done, putting himself in harm’s way to catch a dangerous man.
“He has rightly been commended for the courage he displayed.”