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17 December 2012, 06:00 | Updated: 17 December 2012, 07:09
Police are trying to find a missing can of their incapacity spray after it was knocked from an officer making an arrest in Stowmarket in Suffolk.
At approximately 4.40am Sunday morning a man was arrested on suspicion of breaching a Section 27 notice in Church Lane, Stowmarket.
The man resisted arrest and during police efforts to detain him, a cannister of pava incapacitant spray was knocked loose from an officer's clothing.
Officers have carried out extensive searches of the area to locate the spray but it has not been found.
Police are appealing for anyone who has found the spray to take it to their nearest police station immediately. The spray can cause harm when used, and to keep possession of the item could be considered a criminal offence.
Chief Inspector Kim Warner said, "This is an extremely rare incident, in which an item of police equipment has been lost during the course of a difficult arrest. Items such as this are handled with the utmost care, and officers receive extensive training in how to use them. They should not be used by members of the public and I would urge anyone in possession of this item to take it to their nearest police station at the earliest opportunity."
The spray is described as a small grey cannister, around 4" long, with a flip top button. It is encased in a black holder with a black string attached.
A 23-year-old man from Diss was arrested on suspicion of failure to comply with a section 27 notice and assault on police. He is currently being questioned at Bury St Edmunds Police Investigation Centre.