During a traffic control stop in May last year in Gevelsberg, North Rhine-Westphalia, a wanted drug dealer opened fire on the officers, according to the Bild newspaper. He targeted a policeman who was protected by his body armour from fatal injury and his colleague shot back.
The two female officers who were also present are said to have fled, leaving their male counterparts in the lurch. To get to safety, they even stopped a passing car and ordered it to drive them away from the violent scene. After the shooting, they returned to help with the cordoning off of the crime scene.
Policewomen do office duty
The lawyer of one of the two policewomen asked for understanding for his client: “From the bench, it undoubtedly looks unfortunate. But if you suddenly find yourself in a hail of bullets on a pitch-dark night, not knowing where the shots are coming from, with whom and how many you are dealing with, things look different.” The officer was completely unprepared for this situation in which she found herself in mortal danger, he argued without irony.
If convicted, the two women face removal from the police force and loss of civil servant status. They are currently doing back office work.
The drug dealer was caught after another exchange of fire. He has to answer in court for multiple attempted murders.
In February 2018, the police in North Rhine-Westphalia had prescribed a tougher course against criminals. In a working paper, among other things, sharper training units for combat missions were suggested. This suggestion was in response to the growing violence against police officers.