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Hero police officer who risked life to save woman and children receives bravery award

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A hero police officer, who risked his life in saving a woman and her two children and was slashed in the face by a knife-wielding man, has been awarded the Queen’s Gallantry Medal.

Banbridge police officer Sergeant Mark Wright, put his own life in danger when he was called to a house in Lurgan in 2012.

There he was confronted by a man who had assaulted a woman and locked himself inside with her and two very young children.

Unknown to the officer the man was armed with two knives.

However, realising the seriousness of the situation, and with a woman and two children inside, he attempted to force his way in.

He was then stabbed by the man and suffered serious head wounds.

Despite his injuries, Sergeant Wright wrestled with the man, who also tried to stab a colleague in the throat. Trying to prevent injury to anyone else, Sergeant Wright apprehended the man and handcuffed him.

Although seriously wounded, Sergeant Wright’s actions ensured the safety of two young children, the woman and his two colleagues. The man was arrested, charged and sentenced to seven years in prison.

Sergeant Wright said: “I am extremely humbled and honoured to have been nominated for the Queen’s Gallantry Medal. Our job as police officers is to protect lives and to keep people safe and on that night in question I was only doing my job protecting the individuals within the house.

“I will be accepting this award on behalf of all my colleagues with in the Police Service of Northern Ireland as this was a team effort.”

South Area Co-Ordinator, Chief Superintendent Alywin Barton added: “I am hugely proud of Sergeant Wright and his colleagues. They have been recognised for their heroism and bravery.

“Sergeant Wright put his life in real danger and doing so protected and indeed saved the lives of others.”

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