Man who beat paramedics in 'sustained attack' as they tried to treat him narrowly avoids jail

A man who assaulted two paramedics as they tried to treat him in the back of an ambulance in a "sustained attack" has narrowly avoided jail.

Jacek Zaleski admitted common assault of an emergency worker when he appeared at Dudley Magistrates' Court
Jacek Zaleski admitted common assault of an emergency worker when he appeared at Dudley Magistrates' Court

Jacek Zaleski was given an eight-week prison sentence, suspended for 18 months, after he admitted injuring the ambulance staff and a police officer in Smethwick.

Appearing for sentencing at Dudley Magistrates' Court on Monday, the 47-year-old had previously pleaded guilty to three counts of common assault of an emergency worker and one charge of common assault, all dating back to May 30 last year.

The two paramedics were flagged down in the street while heading back to their hub to help a middle-aged man who appeared to be unwell and punching the floor

After stopping near the junction of Anderson Road and Bearwood Road, they helped Zaleski into the ambulance to start treatment.

Once in the ambulance he became aggressive, grabbing a paramedic around the scruff of neck and lanyard, causing it to break. As the paramedic pulled away, he then grabbed his thumb bending it back, causing lasting pain and discomfort. Zaleski then swung a punch at the technician hitting him in the stomach.

A witness stopped and tried to help, and Zaleski swung a punch at them. Ambulance staff activated their emergency assistance on their radios.

Zaleski was then restrained on the floor inside the rear of the ambulance by the paramedics. Police attended and arrested Zaleski. While in custody, he then spat in the direction of a police constable.

Afterwards one injured crew member was taken to hospital while the other was assessed by ambulance staff at the scene.

Zaleski, of Walsall Street, Willenhall, was told he was being handed a suspended jail sentence because his offence was so serious. The court added: "This was a sustained attack causing distress and injury to the police officer and paramedics that were doing their job and attended to help the defendant."

He was also given an 18-month supervision order, an alcohol treatment requirement for six months and told to pay £400 compensation - £100 for each victim.

Speaking afterwards,West Midlands Ambulance Service's emergency services operations delivery director, Nathan Hudson, said: “We welcome this sentence as it shows how seriously the court took the violence against our crew and police officers.

“Ambulance staff are there to help people in their hour of need. We know that the vast majority of the public find violence against our staff to be abhorrent.

“The impact that violence against our staff has on their lives can be profound: we have seen cases where colleagues are left scared to be alone with a patient; some get flashbacks and other mental health impacts.

“These often long-term effects are on top of the recovery that is needed for their physical injuries that may stop them being able to work for days, weeks or months.

“Violence is not acceptable and we all need to work together to stop it happening.”

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