British Soldier Hailed a Hero for Tripping Fleeing Suspect

(Photo: ABC News)

The bystander who helped British police capture a suspect last week has been revealed.

The British Army said Lance Sergeant Matthew Lawson, 37, was out with his wife last Saturday when he saw police officers chasing a young man who was running toward him. The soldier tripped the suspect, enabling officers to catch and detain him.

Kingston police later posted the CCTV footage of the chase online, thanking the good Samaritan and calling him a legend. The British Army revealed his identity on Thursday.

“I’m not a hero,” Lawson told ABC News. “I was just helping out.”

Lawson, who has served in Iraq, Bosnia and Northern Ireland, is based at Wellington Barracks near Buckingham Palace in London.

“I pay tribute to Matthew’s actions in helping the police apprehend this suspect, which underlines the standards and values the armed forces work to, as well as their readiness to help keep us safe even when off-duty,” said Penny Mordaunt, minister for the armed forces, in a statement.

The 17-year-old suspect was arrested “on suspicion of possession with intent to supply Class A drugs” and is free on bail. He is scheduled to appear in court in April.

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