Wife speaks after ‘confronting’ attack on cop
The wife of a police officer fighting for life after being stabbed multiple times during a routine call-out has broken her silence.
Two police officers were attacked while attending a Crystal Brook home, 200km north of Adelaide on Wednesday morning.
Brevet Sergeant Ian Todd, 53, remains in a critical condition in hospital after suffering “life-threatening” stab wounds to his neck, arm and hands during what police described as a “frenzied attack”.
His counterpart from Crystal Brook police station Brevet Sergeant Jordan Allely, 32, was also flown to hospital where he remains in a serious condition recovering from stab wounds.
Police Commissioner Grant Stevens revealed to reporters that Mr Todd underwent surgery on Wednesday night and “has continued to show signs of progress, positive progress, throughout the day”.
“He still has some way to go though,” he said.
Mr Stevens said that Sergeant Allely had been released from hospital.
“He was stable and had been moved to a ward from the emergency department and he was in generally good spirits,” he said.
Sergeant Todd’s wife and family have issued a statement after the incident, thanking the police, paramedics and other first responders who arrived at the scene.
“In particular, we would like to thank the member of the public who came to the scene and rendered assistance to them both. We are grateful for the courage that they displayed during such a confronting incident. We would also like to thank the staff at Crystal Brook Hospital, Royal Adelaide and MedStar for their care, compassion and treatment,” she said.
“We are also grateful to our local police community, the wider policing community, family, friends and other well-wishers for all of the messages we have received. That overwhelming support has made a huge difference to our family at this difficult time.
“My family and I appreciate all of the many thoughts and well wishes we have received as we continue to focus on Ian’s recovery and are grateful for the privacy shown to us at this difficult time.”
Supermarket spat earlier that morning
Crystal Brook resident Tom Sawyer said he watched local man Sean Ferris start “aggressively shouting” at someone out the front of Foodland supermarket on Wednesday morning.
“It was about the dog, someone was confronting him about it and he was just yelling that there was nothing he could do about it,” he told The Advertiser.
Another resident captured shocking video of Mr Ferris yelling and behaving erratically outside the supermarket.
Local woman Pauline Flavel – believed to be the woman in the video – told The Daily Telegraph that she was patting his husky dog Buddy moments before the dispute erupted.
Chloe, a staff member at the local newsagent, said she served Mr Ferris about 30 minutes before he was shot dead.
“We were just talking about the rain and how it takes so long to dry his dog,“ she told FIVEaa radio.
“Not that long after we found out there was a siege down the street where he lived.”
Routine house call
Sergeant Todd and Sergeant Allely arrived at Mr Ferris’ Symons St home later that day, SA Police Association president Mark Carroll told reporters on Sunrise.
It is understood the routine call-out turned violent within minutes of their arrival.
Mr Ferris reportedly stabbed Sergeant Todd multiple times, including in the neck, before setting upon Sergeant Allely.
He was shot dead while he slashed at the younger officer.
Mr Carroll said it was “too early” to speculate on all the details but praised the actions of Sergeant Allely and a brave neighbour whose heroism certainly saved Sergeant Todd’s life.
“I know from some of the details that Jordan has gone to the aid of Ian and probably saved his life,” he said.
“We also know that a neighbour came to the aid of Ian and that good Samaritan helped save Ian’s life as well.”
Sergeant Todd was surrounded by family in the intensive care unit on Thursday night before undergoing surgery for “life-threatening” injuries.
Mr Carroll said he spoke to Sergeant Allely from the emergency room where he is recovering from stab wounds to his right leg and arm.
“He was pretty sore last night but was talking,” he said.
He is believed to be in a stable condition.
Mr Carroll expects more answers to be revealed during a coronial inquest and a commissioner’s inquiry into the incident.
A way forward
Commissioner Stevens has flagged that South Australia police are supporting the two men and their families throughout the aftermath.
He said that he would ideally like to see them return to their roles within the police force, but flagged that the serious nature of the incident could impact the two men.
“It would be my hope that we can help them transition back into their normal policing roles, but this is something that we’ll work through with each of the individual officers,” he said on Thursday afternoon.
“I’m sure you can imagine dealing with an event like this is not just about recovering from physical injuries, but it‘s about taking into account what they’ve had to do as police officers and the impact that they will have on them going forward.
“And my hope is that we can work with them to restore them to full duties, but we‘ll do whatever we can to make sure that they come out of this as best as possible.”
Who are the cops at the centre of this incident?
The police family have felt deeply the impact of this violent attack, even more so as the two officers who walked into the violent incident both come from families heavily involved with local law enforcement.
“The impact of this incident on the police family is more far-reaching than just those officers who attended the scene,” Commissioner Stevens told reporters on Wednesday afternoon.
Sergeant Todd is in charge of Port Germein police station – a 40-minute drive from the town where the stabbing took place.
His son-in-law is the police officer in charge of a nearby police station south of Crystal Brook.
Sergeant Allely is the officer in charge of Crystal Brook police station.
His father is in charge of Hallett police station east of Crystal Brook, while his partner serves as a constable at one of the neighbouring stations.
“As I’m sure you can imagine, this is a very traumatic incident for police officers to be involved in first hand, but it also has a significant impact on those officers who attend to support their colleagues,” Mr Stevens said.