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Police who tackled deranged knifeman armed with 10in blade in halal butcher's shop praised as attacker jailed indefinitely
Christopher Haughton lashed out at officers with a ten-inch butcher's knife
Was heard chanting 'God help me to kill my enemies' moments before attack
Bit one policeman, repeatedly stabbed another and injured othersJudge has praised officers and detained Haughton indefinitely
17:28 GMT, 13 December 2012
Guilty: Christopher Haughton tried to kill two police officers with a meat cleaver
A judge today praised police officers seriously injured by a deranged knifeman who turned a halal butchers shop into a bloodbath.
Christopher Haughton, 33, seriously injured three officers and attacked the colleagues who tried to save them.
Judge Peter Beaumont, the Recorder of London, said the officers showed courage, as he ordered Haughton to be detained without limit of time under the Mental Health Act.
He asked for his comments to be passed on to the Metropolitan Police commissioner.
Police constables Alistair Hinchliff, Thomas Harding and Andrew Robb needed surgery and months of treatment after the attack in November last year.
Judge Beaumont said: 'It seems appropriate to draw to the attention of the commissioner the court’s appreciation of the very considerable courage of the three police officers.
'All three acted in a very difficult situation with very considerable courage and the public is in their debt.'
He also praised Sergeant David Weir, the senior officer at the scene, who was in a police vehicle when a breeze block was thrown at the windscreen.
The judge said: 'The court expresses its appreciation of the determination and skill he displayed in a situation which was in danger of unravelling out of control.'
Haughton, a paranoid schizophrenic, watched the proceedings from a videolink from Broadmoor secure hospital where he is detained.
In a letter, his mother Angela apologised to the officers on behalf of her family. She said Haughton had been calm and loving before becoming ill.
Haughton, of Wembley, north London, was convicted at the Old Bailey this week of the attempted murders of PCs Hinchliff and Harding.
He was also found guilty of assaulting six other officers, including causing grievous bodily harm to PC Robb.
Haughton caused minor injuries to two female officers during an incident in October last year.
Attacked: Pictured left to right are Alastair Hinchliff, Andrew Robb, John Charlton, Tom Harding and Sham Haque who were involved in the incident in a butcher's
He was allowed bail but in November he caused chaos when he launched his knife attack in Kingsbury, north London.
He was heard chanting ‘God help me to kill my enemies’ moments before the attack.
The police were called and when two
officers tried to speak to him, the 33-year-old, who was armed with a
ten-inch butcher’s knife, refused to calm down and bit one of them on
the arm before throwing bricks at him injuring his hand.
Stabbing: The knife used by Haughton who has been detained without limit for his attack on several policeman
back-up arrived, Haughton made his way towards the butcher’s shop but
stopped to throw a breeze block at the patrol car’s windscreen and tins
of baked beans grabbed from a shop at pursuing officers.
then stormed into a Halal butchers screaming 'Give me a chopper! Give
me a chopper!' before he grabbed the knife and turned on officers who
feared he may attack innocent workers or shoppers.
One officer, PC Thomas Harding, tried to
pin him down with a riot shield but Haughton managed to straddle him
and repeatedly stabbed the officer who wore a stab proof vest until one
blow pierced below the protection into his bowel.
As another officer, PC Alastair
Hinchliff, pushed Haughton off PC Harding, he too fell to the floor and
Haughton slashed him across the left side of his face from temple to ear
with the knife penetrating his cheek into the mouth.
Evidence: PC Stephen Barker, seen arriving at the Old Bailey, said Christopher Haughton bit him and tore his sleeve off with his teeth
He then stabbed PC Hinchliff in the
upper and lower arm exposing the muscle and tendons of the arm as other
officers struck him with their batons with no effect.
Haughton then lashed out twice cutting across PC Andre Robb’s knee.
his continued violence' officers managed to pin him against the meat
counter but as they tried to cuff him, Haughton attempted to stab PC
Shaun Haque in the neck but an officer managed to grab his wrists.
Edward Brown QC, prosecuting, told the court that some of the officers now found it difficult to attend incidents where a knife might be involved.
Incident: Police cordoned off the scene after the stabbings in Kingsbury, north west London. Medical supplies can be seen strewn across the road
PC Harding had nine inches of
intestine removed after he was stabbed in the stomach through a shield
after being pinned on the ground.
He suffered 'unspeakable pain' and thought he was going to die.
PC Hinchliff, who was stabbed in the face and arm when he went to help his colleague, said he had been left with scars on his face.
Mr Brown said: 'He tends to shy away from incidents when mention is made of someone carrying a knife.'
Attack: As police tried to put Haughton into handcuffs he attempted to stab another officer in the neck
He told the trial: 'It was perhaps only a matter of very good fortune that some of the police officers escaped with their lives.'
Detective Inspector Keely Smith said later: 'Without the intervention of other officers at the scene who were able to eventually restrain Haughton, the outcome could have been very different.'
In pre-trial legal hearings Haughton
claimed he was Jesus Christ and police were trying to stop him in his
work of urging gang members to lay down their arms.
Haughton claimed he was insane and had acted in the way he did because police were trying to kill him.
Haughton was also convicted of ABH on
WPC Vicky Vincent and common assault on WPC Alison Spruce just a month
before in October 2011.
Police had been called to Haughton’s
bedsit in Streatham, south London, as he played loud music, brandished a
samurai sword and threatened other residents forcing them to flee.
When one resident complained about the
music, Haughton pushed him down the stairs and then tried to kick in all
the bedsit doors, causing 2,500 of damage.
When officers arrived he charged at
them armed with a broom and in the violent struggle officers had to use
CS spray to subdue him.
However, he still managed to bite WPC
Vincent in her thigh drawing blood and only let go when another officer
whacked him on his shoulders with a baton.
He then spat blood into WPC Alison Spruce’s face.