Belfast Telegraph

Ambulance crew 'threatened with meat clever' in Newtownabbey

By Lesley-Anne McKeown

An 18-year-old man has been arrested after an ambulance crew was allegedly threatened with a meat cleaver.

He was detained in Ravelston Way area of Newtownabbey area on suspicion of common assault and possession of an offensive weapon.

The incident happened just after 10.30am today.

The Ambulance Service claimed two members of staff had to withdraw from the scene for their own safety.

"Two ambulance personnel had to retreat to the safety of their vehicle earlier today when a patient whom they attended became aggressive and moved towards them in a threatening manner wielding a meat cleaver," a spokesman said.

In a statement the Ambulance Service has called for the judiciary to take a tougher stance against violent offenders.

"Attacks on crews continue despite constant appeals for them to cease. Crews need to feel that their own safety will not be jeopardised when attending any call-out.

"The support of those with influence on the community is required to ensure the safety of our personnel and Northern Ireland Ambulance Service would ask that sentencing in the courts should reflect the serious nature of these attacks," a spokesman said.

The suspect remains in PSNI custody.

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