Police officers 'seriously injured' after east London dog attack

Officers were attempting to arrest a suspect when the 'pit bull-type' dog went berserk

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The Independent Online

Five Metropolitan Police officers were taken to hospital today after being attacked by a dog during a house raid in east London.

The officers, from Newham, were attempting to arrest a suspect when the 'pit bull-type' animal went berserk, Scotland Yard said.

The injured officers are now in a stable condition in hospital following the incident, which took place at around 9am this morning.

The dog reportedly had to be shot four times by specialist police officers.

Four of the officers had serious injuries following the attack and a fifth was treated for minor injuries.

A man in his 20s, believed to be the owner of the dog, has been arrested.

The police said this afternoon, “Police attended an address in Albert Square to execute an arrest warrant at approximately 9am. While officers from Newham attempted to arrest a male suspect, they were attacked by a pit-bull-type dog.”

Several officers were bitten by the dog on their arms and legs, and pools of blood were visible near the entrance of the property, the Press Association reported.

Neighbours attempted to intervene after the dog, which is thought to resemble a Staffordshire bull terrier bit one officers leg.

CO19 the Specialist Firearms Command unit sent officers to the scene. A dog unit was also in attendance.

The animal was contained and then shot dead.

Officers were attending the property in Albert Square, east London, as part of Operation Big Wing, a police initiative on a range of offences.

A total of 1,619 "visits" were made across London, carrying out searches for people who had refused to appear at court or were wanted by police, the force said.

The most seriously injured of the officers could possibly require skin grafts to repair wounds it was widely reported this afternoon.

Speaking this afternoon Commander Stephen Watson said the officers came under "sustained attack", from the dog.

"I think what our officers have confronted is the bravery that they very often display in protecting Londoners on a daily basis.

"One man is in custody, inquiries continue, but the person was arrested in line with the original purposes of the inquiries and subsequently with offences concerning the Dangerous Dogs Act."