In Brief

Police officer tells how he fought off London Bridge attackers

Wayne Marques continued to face terrorists despite temporarily losing his sight

marques.jpg

A police officer who fought off three attackers during the London Bridge terrorist attack that killed eight people has spoken about the ordeal for the first time.

British Transport Police Officer Wayne Marques was patrolling near the bridge when the attack happened in early June and he was one of the first responders.

After hearing screams, Marques said he ran towards the scene. The 38-year-old originally thought the disturbance was a pub or gang fight "at the most", he told the BBC.

After seeing bouncers and members of the public standing like "deers in the headlights", Marques said he knew something was wrong. He realised a major incident was underway once he saw the attackers.

"I took a deep breath and charged at the first attacker," he said, adding that he swung his baton "with everything I had as hard as I could, straight through his head, trying to go for a knockout blow".

After hearing the attacker "yelp in pain", the man struck back, hitting Marques "so hard that my right eye went lights out straight away, I just went blind". Marques was stabbed several times, "with the major injuries to his head, left leg and left hand", according to the Independent.

He said he recalled the attackers turning to face him after the fight, saying "three of them were standing together almost shoulder-to-shoulder, in like a little wolf pack, and they're staring at me. And that's when I get to size them up.

"The short one that was on the right-hand side, he was the one that I heard saying 'Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar.' He said it a few times, eyes bulging. And I'm basically just like a cowboy western movie waiting for the draw, waiting for them to make their move."

But the three attackers turned and ran from Marques, continuing their rampage elsewhere. All three were shot dead within minutes.

Officer Marques has been hailed as a "hero" by the Daily Mirror and the London Evening Standard for his actions during the attack.

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