Police have arrested a man in his 20s after two police officers were injured after their vehicle was deliberately rammed outside Newry on Monday, 10th June.

The man - arrested by the officers from Newry Mourne and Down District Support Team in the Newry area earlier today 11th June - remains in custody at this time. 

A car was reported stolen from outside a home in Irish Street in Armagh City yesterday, Monday 10th June, at around 9am. The silver Volkswagen Passat had been located by police in Newry. However, when officers attempted to stop the vehicle in the Shepherd’s Way on-slip to the A1 dual carriageway at around 9.25am, the driver of the stolen vehicle then reversed at speed and rammed the police vehicle in an apparent attempt to evade police. He then made off on foot.

Two officers were injured and taken to hospital by ambulance while the patrol vehicle sustained serious damage.

The damaged police vehicle.

Newry, Mourne & Down District Commander, Superintendent Norman Haslett said: "The officers are still recovering from their injuries and one has returned to work today, I wish them both well. 

"I need to state that the action of the driver responsible for this latest shameful attack on our officers is totally unacceptable. Being deliberately rammed by another vehicle travelling at speed is a traumatic experience with potentially life changing consequences.

“Police officers are members of the community doing a job; a vocation to protect the public and they all work incredibly hard to keep their communities safe. While we come to work knowing we could be faced with difficult and dangerous situations, it is completely unacceptable that we should be attacked for simply doing our jobs.

“The community suffers as a result of deliberate rammings. Officers may need some time from work to recover so they are not available to serve the community in their Neighbourhood, District Crime Team and Local Response roles. Their job is to protect the community from harm – catching burglars, arresting drug dealers, taking criminals off the streets and keeping the community safe. They cannot do this if they are injured.

“Finally, there is a financial cost. Police officers who are off work need to be replaced, often using overtime. Police vehicles are often damaged beyond repair. Policing in Northern Ireland is currently facing a financial crisis and this eats into an ever decreasing policing budget meaning that we cannot put much-needed funds into important operations to keep people safe.

“I need those responsible for these rammings to understand the potentially horrific consequences of their actions. I also need the community to understand and appreciate the role and the duties that their police officers undertake on a daily basis on their behalf to keep them safe . If anyone, anyone at all has any information relating to such incidents then they should contact us immediately on 101 or using 999 in an emergency.”