Police officer 'feared for his life' during crossbow confrontation

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

South Wales Police has released video showing officers who “feared for their lives” use a rubber bullet to take down a man brandishing a loaded crossbow.

Officers from the regional Joint Firearms Unit (JFU) shot 27-year-old Robert Samuel with a baton round before arresting him at the scene of the incident in Llanelli in March.

In a Facebook post, the force said the footage showed the “professionalism” of the JFU and the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) praised the officers for “using the least force possible”, despite one officer saying he feared for his life.

Samuel had called 999 in the early hours of March 26 and told operators he was hearing voices in his head and that he was going to kill police.

Officers from South Wales Police and Heddlu Dyfed Powys Police attended and repeatedly asked Samuel to put down the loaded crossbow before incapacitating and arresting him.

Wales Online reported that in the police interview that followed, Samuel told officers he had no intention of causing harm and that his actions were “a cry for help” due to mental health issues.

The online newspaper said he told interviewers: "I went out with a crossbow in the hope police would shoot and kill me".

The defendant pleaded guilty to charges of making threats to kill, making threats with an offensive weapon, and possession of Class B drugs.

He was sentenced to two years in jail and was told he would serve half of the sentence in custody before being released on licence.

Read more 

Man shot dead in Northern Ireland village

Baby delivered safely after pregnant mother shot dead by crossbow