TWO police officers have been assaulted and strangled in a violent incident in Colchester.

The officers were responding to reports of an incident involving three people – it was reported that two men were assaulting a third man - in North Station Road, shortly after 10.30pm last night.

An officer who was closest to the scene quickly arrived and saw two people running from the area.

When the officer began to pursue and catch up, he was assaulted and strangled.

Both suspects then attempted to continue to flee the area which is when Essex police say they believe the officer also “lost consciousness”.

When a second officer arrived – a volunteering Essex Police Special - too caught up with the suspects, he was attacked and strangled from behind.

Additional officers then arrived with two people, a man aged 37 and a 17-year-old, being arrested.

The man and teenager remain in custody, being questioned on suspicion of assaulting an emergency worker and intentional strangulation.

Both officers were taken to hospital for treatment and thankfully, both have been discharged and will be given the time to recover should they wish to use it.

Detective Chief Inspector Rob Huddleston said: “Policing is rightly scrutinised by the public, given the responsibility the role requires but very often what the public do not see is selfless, brave officers literally running towards danger to do their job.

“They do that all-through the day, late at night and in the early hours of the morning so the rest of us don’t have to. Their families expect to them to come home safely from their shift and last night, there were two very worried families.

“Thankfully, ours is a family force. We look after each other and we support each other. One of the officers involved in this incident is an Essex Police Special. Whilst he is trained to the same level as a regular officer, he is not paid for his work; he volunteers his time and we are lucky to have him and his many Special colleagues across the force.”

Essex police continue to investigate the original report made to us of a fight between three men in North Station Road and have yet had a victim come forward.  

Essex police further believe both incidents were witnessed by people passing by - either on foot or in vehicles - and would urge anyone with information to please come forward here.

Please cite incident 1285 of 17 February when visiting Essex police's website reporting services or when calling 101.