DATE OF PDSA GOLD MEDAL ACTION: 01/2008 Wiltshire.
Anya was a newly qualified Police Dog in January 2008, when she and handler PC Neil Sampson were among a group of police officers called to attend a flat where there were reports of a man armed with a knife. Though fully trained, she had not yet experienced a violent encounter for real.
PC Sampson and Anya were watching the entrance to the flats when a man emerged and walked towards them, drew a knife and began swiping it back and forth at PC Sampson.
Anya leapt into action immediately, confronting the assailant head on. She tackled him fearlessly, as he lunged and slashed at both officer and dog. During the frenzied attack PC Sampson received seven stab wounds; four to the back of his head, one through his lip and two in his right leg. His stab vest also took a number of strikes.
Within moments other officers intervened. They deployed batons and a taser gun before the violence subsided and the assailant was disarmed. PC Sampson was face down on the ground with severe injuries – but still alive. Anya was also stabbed and suffered a chest wound, requiring veterinary care.
During this horrific attack, PC Sampson and his fellow officers faced extreme danger. Had it not been for Anya’s dedication to her duty and unstinting devotion to her handler, both the severity and number of injuries sustained would undoubtedly have been greater.
PDSA GOLD MEDAL CITATION:
For devotion to duty and lifesaving bravery in the face of danger, when faced with a knife-wielding assailant, on 3 January 2008.
BURIAL LOCATION: UNKNOWN.
LOCATION OF MEDAL: UNKNOWN.
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