A MAN has today been jailed for 16 years for twice stabbing a Hampshire police officer in the back.

Drug-dealer Michael Enzanga, 20, of no fixed address, was previously found guilty of causing grievous bodily harm with intent.

Enzanga plunged a knife into PC Russell Turner's back on February 21, leaving him with a collapsed lung.

Jurors were told that PC Turner and a colleague were carrying out patrols in the Stamshaw Park area of Portsmouth following reports of drug-related activity.

Having seen suspicious behaviour in the park, the officers approached Enzanga and attempted to arrest him.

As PC Turner prepared to handcuff him Enzanga pulled out a knife and stabbed him twice as terrified families watched on from the park.

Enzanga fled the scene, jumping over fences and running through people’s back gardens, but was arrested a short time later.

Following a two-week trial at Portsmouth Crown Court the jury took just 45 minutes to find Enzanga guilty of the attack, as well as possession of a bladed article, four counts of possessing class A drugs with intent, and possession of criminal property.

Today he was sentenced to 16 years in prison, with an extended license period of four years for the attack.

The court heard the defendant already had a number of previous convictions for possession of a knife and possessing class A drugs with intent to supply, dating back to 2014.

Judge Roger Hetherington told him: “You were no innocent dupe. You were already an experienced criminal who knew exactly what you were about.”

Following the sentencing Russell Turner said: “On the day this happened PC Clare Parry and I went on patrol in Stamshaw Park with two objectives: firstly to find and safeguard who we thought was a vulnerable young man and secondly to protect the local community.

“Neither of us expected to get stabbed.

"Stamshaw Park should be a nice place to walk the dog, take the children to or just to go for a walk in, it shouldn't be a place where someone thinks that it is alright to deal drugs and carry a knife, and on that day in broad daylight during half term.

“Clare and I have been beat officers for a long time and have always listened to and tried to respond to what our communities are telling us.

“We are not unique in this and police officers do care and want to make the communities in which they work safer places for the public.

“That's what we were trying to do. That community has been fantastic in supporting us and assisting so brilliantly with the investigation, and for that I will be eternally grateful.

“I also want to say thank you for the support my family and I have had from colleagues and members of the public during what has been a very difficult time for us. It has helped immensely.

“I have now left Hampshire Constabulary, partly because of this incident, and want to pass on my best wishes to everyone and hope you all stay safe."

Detective Inspector Matthew Barcraft-Barnes added: “Enzanga’s brutal actions that day could have easily caused the death of our officer.

“As young children watched on, he didn’t think twice about using his knife. All he cared about was his escape, no matter what the consequences were for anyone else.

“It is never easy to have to deal with a case when one of our colleagues is seriously injured for simply doing their job but the team showed great professionalism and dedication to ensure this dangerous man was taken off of our streets.”

Superintendent Steve Burridge, District Commander for Portsmouth, said: “This was a horrific attack on one of our officers who was working hard to try to make our community a safer place for everyone.

“He was out on a patrol that day following reports from residents about drug-dealing in the area.

“The support we got from the community and the Ministry of Defence Police in the aftermath of this attack was overwhelming and we would like to thank everyone for this as it meant a lot during a very difficult time for our officers.

“So many people got in touch with vital information that helped us to ensure this violent man was swiftly arrested and brought to justice.

“It is this kind of support that helps us to continue our work at tackling drug-related harm in our area. You are our eyes and ears out there and the information you pass to us helps us build up a picture of what is really going on in your communities, and take action.

“Every day our officers are out there, serving our communities, never knowing what they will face and this attack just goes to show the dangers they can be confronted with and how lucky we are to have people who are willing to stand up for what is right.”