Jan 23, 2020
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Handyman who launched horrific machete attack on PC is found guilty

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Terrifying footage caught on a police officer’s body-worn camera shows the moment he was repeatedly hacked with a machete after a routine traffic stop.

Video captures white van man Muhammad Rodwan swinging the blade at PC Stuart Outten’s head, fracturing his skull and leaving him with six severe head wounds.

The blood-covered police officer is seen heroically firing off his Taser during the violent struggle, in a move that the Old Bailey heard had probably saved his life.

Bleeding heavily from deep gashes to the head, broken fingers and a wound to the arm, PC Outten shouted at a passerby to pass his radio so he could call for help.

Rodwan, 56, who has previous convictions for rape and two machete attacks, claimed he acted in self defence, telling police: ‘My life is worth more than his life’.

But the graphic police body worn video showed him punching the officer – who was later dubbed ‘Britain’s hardest cop’ on social media – before grabbing the machete.

PC Stuart Outten, 29

Muhammad Rodwan (left), fractured the skull of PC Stuart Outten (shown lying on the ground injured, right) when he pulled him over for driving without insurance

Pictured: The machete used by Rodwan to fracture PC Stuart Outten's skull during a sustained assault in east London

Pictured: The machete used by Rodwan to fracture PC Stuart Outten’s skull during a sustained assault in east London

Video captured Rodwan swinging the blade at PC Stuart Outten's head, fracturing his skull and leaving him with six severe head wounds

Video captured Rodwan swinging the blade at PC Stuart Outten’s head, fracturing his skull and leaving him with six severe head wounds

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PC Outten is shown struggling to his feet (left) after firing off his Taser and incapacitating his attacker Rodwan (right)

Just an hour before the incident, PC Outten had texted his girlfriend, who is also an officer: ‘Right I’m off to cause trouble. Stay safe my love.’

Later, he sent her the rueful update that it was ‘a bit more trouble’ than he had bargained for.

Afterwards, PC Outten said he counted himself ‘very lucky’ to survive, saying ‘thankfully’ his head was hard enough to withstand the onslaught.

He said: ‘On that night I was just doing my job, doing what I’m trained to do, but more importantly making sure I didn’t die, because that was a distinct possibility had the attack carried on.

‘Once he’s started hitting me in the head with the machete, then I realised it was escalating very quickly and I was having to now fight for my life.

‘I recall specifically as I was falling to the floor, having fired the first shot and aiming for the second (thinking) that if this doesn’t work, this might be it. 

‘But luckily the Taser worked. It did its job. He fell incapacitated next to me and I was able to use it to keep him on the floor and to keep myself alive.’

Of his attacker, he said: ‘It feels good to see the system going through the paces, but personal feelings for him? I don’t have any.

Rodwan is pictured arguing with officers moments before he reaches into his van and pulls out a machete

Rodwan is pictured arguing with officers moments before he reaches into his van and pulls out a machete

The police officer is seen heroically firing off his Taser as Rodwan swings the machete during the violent struggle

The police officer is seen heroically firing off his Taser as Rodwan swings the machete during the violent struggle

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PC Outten suffered six severe head wounds (left, and right, after recovery) and a court heard he could have died had he not bravely fired off his Taser in a bid to disarm Rodwan

Bleeding heavily from deep gashes to the head, broken fingers and a wound to the arm, PC Outten shouted at a passerby to pass his radio so he could call for help

Bleeding heavily from deep gashes to the head, broken fingers and a wound to the arm, PC Outten shouted at a passerby to pass his radio so he could call for help

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Shown left are the injuries suffered by PC Outten, while a photograph from inside Rodwan’s van shows dreadlocks lying on the floor

‘There’s no hatred. He did what he did, he’s now paying the price for it.

‘I don’t feel the attack was personal. He was attacking an officer in uniform and I responded as such.’

Dismissing the ‘hardest cop’ title he was given by the tabloid press, Pc Outten said: ‘Luckily I have the size and build that I can take a couple of machete blows to the head – apparently – and I can act afterwards.’

The jury was not told that Rodwan had previously attacked two men with a machete in the bedroom of his flat in east London in 1996.

The defendant, then known as Rodney Reid, was jailed at Snaresbrook Crown Court for nine years for wounding with intent. 

In 1983, he was jailed at the Old Bailey for three years for rape and in 2008 he received a caution for having cannabis, according to sources.

At the time of his arrest last year, Rodwan gave a relative’s address in Luton, Bedfordshire, but went on to tell jurors he slept in his van around Waltham Forest. 

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PC Outten is pictured recovering in hospital (left), while another image shows defensive wounds to his arm (right)

The dramatic scene where PC Outten was knifed in Leyton, London, and fellow officers pin down the suspect and then arrest him on suspicion of grievous bodily harm

The dramatic scene where PC Outten was knifed in Leyton, London, and fellow officers pin down the suspect and then arrest him on suspicion of grievous bodily harm 

During his trial, Mrs Justice Carr ruled Rodwan’s violent past was inadmissible despite jurors asking about previous convictions.

Following the verdicts, Detective Chief Superintendent Richard Tucker paid tribute to PC Outten, saying: ‘He did what I would hope the vast majority of police officers in the country would do.

‘He had the training, he put that into action, notwithstanding he was very, very lucky that day and I’m very, very proud of Stuart. He did an amazing job to apprehend that individual.’

The commander for the Waltham Forest and Newham area said there had been a rise in attacks on police personnel in the capital, with 16 recorded every day.

But he said: ‘We are not going to arm our officers because it’s not necessary in terms of our demand.

‘You will always come across people who are prepared to have a go at the police. I can never plan for every eventuality. We try to. We risk assess our big operations.

‘The incident involving Stuart, that’s what we do every single day. We patrol. We stop cars that have not got insurance and we deal with people, and in a city of nine million people some of them are quite violent.

Muhammad Rodwan, 56, appeared at Thames Magistrates’ Court

Muhammad Rodwan, 56, appeared at Thames Magistrates’ Court charged with attempted murder and possession of an offensive weapon. He is in custody until September 6

Muhammed Rodwan, 56, was originally charged with attempted murder at the Thames Magistrates’ Court (artist’s impression, left, and right)

The officer's blood can be seen smothered across the road as the police pin down his attacker

The officer’s blood can be seen smothered across the road as the police pin down his attacker

‘So other than, I don’t know, having everyone carrying guns and everyone going out in fours, sometimes these incidents happen.’

He called on the public to spare a thought for the ‘extraordinary’ men and women working to keep communities safe, and to lend them help rather than film on their mobile phones.

Rodwan, of Luton, Bedfordshire, denied and was cleared of attempted murder and possessing an offensive weapon. He was convicted of wounding with intent.

Metropolitan Police Federation chairman Ken Marsh said he was ‘saddened’ that the jury acquitted Rodwan of attempted murder.

He said: ‘Had my colleague PC Stuart Outten not utilised the Taser when he did, he would have received further blows and would not have been able to defend himself. It would have been fatal.

‘And my colleagues are facing these kinds of incidents on a daily basis from members of the public.

‘This was a ferocious attack on a colleague and I am saddened by the verdict that has come back on this.’

Mrs Justice Carr will pass sentence tomorrow.

The police officer was bleeding when he called the emergency services, saying: 'I need an ambulance now. I've been stabbed with a machete'

The police officer was bleeding when he called the emergency services, saying: ‘I need an ambulance now. I’ve been stabbed with a machete’

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