Off-duty officer assaulted by car thief – Sapphire Beach, near Coffs Harbour

A man has been charged after allegedly attempting to steal a police officer’s vehicle on the Mid North Coast this morning.

About 4.20am today (Monday 25 May 2020), a senior police officer attached to Mid North Coast Police District was approaching his Mitsubishi Triton ute to travel to work from his Sapphire Beach home.

As he opened the vehicle, he noticed a 21-year-old man behind the driver’s seat.

The officer identified himself and informed the man he was under arrest.

The man struggled before punching and kicking the officer several times and releasing the vehicle’s handbrake, causing it to impact with a parked car and a nearby residence.

The man continued to violently struggle but was restrained by the senior officer prior to the arrival of officers from Coffs/Clarence PD.

During a subsequent search of the vehicle, police located a large hunting knife on the front passenger seat.

The man was taken to Coffs Harbour Police Station before being taken to Coffs Harbour Health Campus for treatment.

Upon his release from hospital, he was conveyed back to Coffs Harbour Police Station and charged with seven offences including:

  • Enter inclosed land not prescribed premises without lawful excuse
  • Destroy or damage property (x3)
  • Assault police officer in execution of duty cause actual bodily harm
  • Resist or hinder police officer in the execution of duty
  • Enter vehicle without consent of owner/occupier

The man was refused bail to face Port Macquarie Local Court today (Monday 25 May 2020), where he was again refused bail to appear at Coffs Harbour Local Court on Monday 1 June 2020.

The senior officer sustained a fracture to his hand and soft tissue injuries during the arrest.

/Public Release. View in full here.