Police face weekend of raves, firearms incidents and assaults

Police faced a weekend of raves, firearms incidents and assaults in Devon and Cornwall, a senior officer has said.

Superintendent Jim Gale, Commander North, East and West Devon, praised officers across the Force Area for their “brilliant work” and “dedication and professionalism” after a challenging weekend saw “several officers assaulted.”

On Friday night into Saturday morning, officers using police dogs broke up an illegal rave which took place in a quiet Devon village.

Around 200 people attended the rave in Hawkchurch, East Devon, overnight, with around 100 cars parked nearby. Over almost five hours Devon and Cornwall Police sent in a number of units to clear the site near Axminster under the Public Order Act.

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And a 24-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of being in possession of a firearm by armed officers who surrounded a Plymouth pub on Saturday afternoon.

A passerby told PlymouthLive he saw a young man reach into his bag and pull out a handgun and then put it back again.

Reflecting on the weekend on Twitter, Superintendent Jim Gale said: “Brilliant work from multiple teams across the force this weekend, dealing with assaults, raves, firearms incidents and other things.

“Several officers assaulted in my command area too. Unacceptable. Very proud of dedication and professionalism from all @DC_Police.”

Last week, government advisers warned that serious public disorder in the coming months could “overwhelm all attempts” to control coronavirus and “catastrophically” undermine recovery plans.

The current “volatile and highly complex situation” means the UK will face “grave challenges” in maintaining public order, according to a paper considered by the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) in July.

Plymouth Live