A hero Met police officer just two weeks in the job confronted dangerous armed robbers during a jewellery shop heist, while barefoot and just in his pants.
PC Andrew Wienand, or 'PC Pants' as his colleagues now call him, dashed out of his home when he saw what was happening and even had a pickaxe thrown at his head, narrowly missing him.
He was woken up in the middle of the night by loud banging coming from outside his bedroom window in Barnes, London.
His girlfriend looked outside the window in the early hours of 31 May 2019 to find four masked men taking it in turns to smash a pickaxe into the bulletproof window of the jewellery shop below his flat.
After she told PC Wienand to do something to stop it, he leapt up without getting dressed and went outside to intervene.
PC Weinand, who had moved to London from South Africa a few years ago, said: "I woke up super groggy and not knowing what was happening, and then I looked outside and the men looked up at me right in the eye.
"They were fully clothed in black with balaclavas, helmets, and gloves and they had a pickaxe.
"The building was shaking as the bulletproof glass was resisting and the panic started building in me when I realised that our door was the one next to the jewellers and they might have thought this was another way in.
"I got scared, and when I get scared, I get angry and fight or flight kicked in. I thought 'screw it', and ran down the stairs in my boxer shorts before yelling at them in Afrikaans - my second language.
"I thought it might frighten them - along with my bare chest, pasty white body, and lots of hair."
The 32-year-old managed to disarm the robber before picking up the pickaxe and chasing the masked men off with it.
PC Wienand said: "I was actually running barefoot over all the bulletproof glass that they'd shattered but I didn't feel the pain at the time because my adrenaline was pumping.
"It wasn't the smartest thing to do and I was very new in the police at the time. But, I'd do it again because when you are scared you go to base instincts and I'm a fighter.
"A lot of people did nothing and just watched and my colleagues said they wouldn't have done anything - but again, I'd definitely still do it again."
Shortly after, police officers arrived at the scene and PC Wienand, who usually works in the Hammersmith area, gave them the 'pull over' signal.
He told the officers what had happened as other police cars went screeching after the mopeds.
PC Wienand added: "Ideally next time this happens I'd like to be in uniform with a baton and a little bit of pepper spray.
"I'm not sure if it's heroic, probably stupid more than anything - and my colleagues give me so much hassle it's not even funny.
"It's all good-natured banter."
After the incident took place, PC Wienand was nominated for the 2020 Police Bravery Award and although he didn't win, his granny was proud of his heroism.
She wasn't the only person either because the rumour about what had happened soon spread high up the chain of command.
PC Weinand said: "At the awards, the Met Police deputy commissioner who is really high up said to me, 'are you Pants Man?' "I was like oh my gosh this person is so many ranks above me and he's calling me Pants Man.
"My colleagues use that name, PC Pants or Captain Underpants - and a few of them do call me a hero."
In light of the armed robbery, a spokesperson for the Metropolitan Police said: " A 29-year-old officer was off-duty when he was awoken by a disturbance near his home in Barnes High Street, SW13, at about 03:30hrs on Friday, 31 May.
"He realised a jeweller's shop window had been smashed and that suspects were attempting to break in.
"Acting instantly, he ran out into the street in just his boxers - he challenged them and a pick axe was thrown at him.
"It narrowly missed him and he picked it up and ran at the suspects to stop them further breaking into the shop.
"The suspects managed to escape on mopeds but left behind a number of weapons including a pick-axe, sledgehammer, and a chisel.
"The shop window was damaged but the suspects did not manage to break in and steal any property. The officer cut his foot on broken glass but was not otherwise injured."
Commander Sally Benatar from the South West Borough Command Unit said: "The bravery of this officer undoubtedly stopped the suspects from stealing anything from the premises.
"He is a brand new officer, merely days into his role as a PC and he should be very proud of his actions.
"I have spoken to him today to thank him for his outstanding efforts.
"This morning's events go to show that police officers are never off-duty and will always go above and beyond to help their community."
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