A POLICE officer was bitten and punched by a suspect after reports of a disturbance.

Officers were called to a property in Sussex Road, Haywards Heath at 10pm on Saturday night (May 1).

It is understood that three people were arrested.

The initial report to the police was over concerns property was being damaged.

Inspector Darren Taylor then said police were attacked by one suspect.

He said three arrests were made, but one suspect remains at large.

Inspector Taylor said one suspect had "punched and bitten" an officer and said the behaviour was "unacceptable".

On Twitter he wrote: "Unacceptable! Team responded to reports of property being damaged in Sussex Road, Haywards Heath last night at 10pm.

"Three in custody for ABH (assault occasioning actual bodily harm) and assault against an emergency worker.

"One of the team was punched and bitten by one of the suspects.

"Another suspect remains outstanding."

Police said Faith Filmer-Sankewy, 18, of Leylands Road, Burgess Hill was arrested and later charged with causing actual bodily harm and the assault by beating of an emergency worker.

She will appear at Crawley Magistrates' Court on May 17.

A 13, 14 and 17-year-old girl from Haywards Heath were arrested on suspicion of obstructing or resisting a constable in execution of duty. The 13 and 14-year-old were also arrested on suspicion of assault by beating of an emergency worker. They have all been released under investigation while enquiries are ongoing.

Chief Superintendent Nick May added: “Working for the police can be a dangerous and unpredictable job and every day our brave officers and staff work hard, often in difficult and challenging circumstances, to keep people safe. 

“It is unacceptable when an officer is assaulted when carrying out their duties and must never be seen as part of the job.

"The impact of an assault on an officer while on duty can be both physically and psychologically significant. It not only affects that individual, but also their team and their family.” 

Anyone with information about the incident or the fourth suspect can report it to Sussex Police online or call 101 and quote incident CAD reference 1431 of 01/05.