Thug jailed for jaw break punch on paramedic
A man who punched a paramedic – breaking his jaw and leaving him needing metal plates in his face – has been jailed after we caught the thug shortly after the sickening attack.
Coventry man Jamie Davies called for an ambulance at the height of the CoVID pandemic in April claiming to be experiencing breathing difficulties.
Paramedics arrived in Winifred Avenue at 9pm on 5 April but could find nothing wrong with the 22-year-old who’d made six 999 calls in the space of just over an hour – and been seen by paramedics already that evening.
He demanded an inhaler and when student paramedic Chris Cooling and his colleague walked away cowardly Davies punched Mr Cooling from behind in the face.
Davies sped away, crashing into the ambulance as he drove off, but we spotted him behind the wheel of his damaged Vauxhall Meriva the next day in Holyhead Road.
Investigators found that, just days earlier on 31 March, Davies was abusive to staff at Balliol Road doctor’s surgery where he smashed a glass door pane.
We charged him with wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm and at Coventry Crown Court yesterday (24 Nov) he was jailed for seven years and two months having admitted the offence. He was also banned from driving for three years.
Mr Cooling, aged 40, was on a liquid-only diet for four weeks following surgery and has only recently returned to work on light duties.
He welcomed the sentence and said he hoped it served as a deterrent that assaults on emergency services staff will be dealt with firmly.
“This incident has had a massive impact on me,” he added. “I have so far lost seven months of my life to this attack and I am not yet able to resume my career, a career that I love.
“Like my colleagues, I come to work to help people. I suffered particularly severe injuries but many others have also been attacked. It is sentences like this that will make people stop and think before they do something similar, yet too often the sentences do not reflect the effect such incidents have on us.
“I would like to thank West Midlands Ambulance Service for their support throughout and also to West Midlands Police for their quick response and the Crown Prosecution Service for putting such a strong case together.”
Coventry Police Commander, Chief Superintendent Mike O’Hara, at the time said he was “sickened" by the incident.
He said: “Attacks on any emergency services staff will never be tolerated but this was a particularly sickening incident on an NHS worker who was on the frontline of our national efforts to tackle coronavirus.
“I think I speak for the whole of Coventry in wishing the paramedic well in his continued recovery.”