Brave actions of officer who saved student

PC Dave Pinnington.
PC Dave Pinnington.

A police officer who selflessly stepped in to save the life of a student being stabbed in a brutal knife attack has been nominated for a bravery award.

PC Dave Pinnington of Heysham has already been commended by the Chief Constable and was awarded the William Garnett Cup 2014 after restraining and disarming Gary Davies, who had stabbed his ex-partner Robyn Clegg-Gibson.

The incident happened last year on Monday, September 30, 2013 just after midnight when Robyn Clegg-Gibson rang police to report that she had been locked in her bedroom by Gary Davies, who was threatening to hurt her with a kitchen knife.

PC Dave Pinnington said: “All we knew was that the student was having issues with her boyfriend refusing to leave.

“You think the students aren’t going to pose much of an issue and that we were going to mediate.

“It was a big Victorian house on Scotforth Road where each student had their own room and communal facilities.

“I went up to the first floor and knocked on the door and said ‘police’ then it all happened extremely quickly.

“I heard a scream and I thought ‘this isn’t going the way I expected’ .

“The police have powers to force entry when there is threat to life and limb. I kicked the door in and saw two bodies on the floor.

“I dragged the top one off, which was the attacker. I couldn’t see what was in his hands.

“As I got him restrained on the floorI looked up and saw a young lady with blood streaming down her arm.

“I looked back and saw the knife on the floor.

“I got him handcuffed and by this time she had gone out of the room.

“When I searched him he had a pair of scissors in his front pocket as well. I asked him quite simply, ‘Did you cause that with the knife?’ and he said ‘Yes’.

“She was clutching a towel to her throat which was rapidly turning red.

“My colleagues took her straight to hospital and started taking statements.

“I got home at the end of the night shift just as my wife, who ironically is a paramedic, was going to work.

“I sat down and tried to take stock of a few things.My wife Anna is very proud of me but also there was that afterthought of what could have happened.”

Dave has been a police officer for eight years.

He started his career in Morecambe but for the past two-and-a-half years has been working in Lancaster.He said: “I’m shocked and it’s still quite difficult to get my head around.

“I’m not one for blowing my own trumpet so I go to the awards ceremony with a certain amount of trepidation.

“We are police and this is what we have to do.”

Chief Constable Steve Finnigan said: “The swift, selfless and extremely brave response exhibited by PC Dave Pinnington to the report of an on-going serious domestic assault where a young woman was being subjected to a vicious knife attack, without doubt saved her life.”

Gary Davies was sentenced to eight years imprisonment after pleading guilty earlier this year at Preston Crown Court to Section 18 wounding with intent and false imprisonment.

The police bravery awards take place in London this week.