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Last Updated: Monday, 31 December 2007, 17:20 GMT
Shot officer praised for bravery
The Hospital Inn, Bamber Bridge
Four people were inside the pub when it was raided
A female police officer who was shot by a robber fleeing from a pub raid has been praised for her bravery.

Pc Katie Johnson, 29, was shot in the leg outside the Hospital Inn in Bamber Bridge, near Preston, Lancashire.

Police have commended Pc Johnson, a dog handler who is now recovering at home, for her "considerable bravery".

A man in his 40s has been arrested and is being questioned, but a second man is also being sought and the shotgun used in the attack has not been found.

Police are appealing for the public's help in tracing a man described as white, big and aggressive, with a stocky, muscular build, at least 6ft tall and with dark-coloured eyes.

He was wearing a black padded jacket at the time of the raid.

This was an incredibly violent incident - the level of violence was extreme
Assistant Chief Constable Jerry Graham

Detectives are warning members of the public not to confront this man but to contact them or Crimestoppers.

Pc Johnson was one of several officers responding to a 999 call at the pub at 0815 GMT.

Four people were in the pub when two men wearing balaclavas burst in.

One man who works in the pub was seriously hurt in the attack and was taken to Chorley Hospital.

Police refused to reveal the nature of his injuries, but said he was not shot.

BBC map showing area where the shooting happened

Officers said two men emerged from the pub and one of them shot at Pc Johnson as he made his getaway.

She was hit by 12 pellets and was taken to the Royal Preston Hospital. She was released after treatment.

Assistant Chief Constable Jerry Graham described the incident as "callous" and "beyond the pale".

He said Pc Johnson showed considerable bravery to challenge an armed man.

"It's a mercy that we are not dealing with a murder inquiry today," he said.

"This was an incredibly violent incident - the level of violence was extreme."

Officers believe a red Vauxhall Vectra with the registration plate N396 RHO was used in the robbery.

The robbers are believed to have fled down a nearby railway line, which was closed while police searched the area.

Officers are appealing for anyone with information about the robbery to contact them.



VIDEO AND AUDIO NEWS
Asst Chief Constable Jerry Graham describes the shooting



SEE ALSO
Arrest after woman officer shot
31 Dec 07 |  Lancashire

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