Masked moped riders mug cycle paramedic on emergency call-out
Katherine McKenna was on her way to treat an elderly man who had fallen down the stairs when three people attacked her.
A cycle paramedic responding to an emergency was mugged by masked moped riders in central London – one of the latest of a spate of moped-related incidents in the capital.
Katherine McKenna, who works for London Ambulance Service, was on her way to treat an elderly man who had fallen down the stairs when three people attacked her.
The muggers, who all wore black helmets, mounted the pavement on two mopeds and snatched her mobile phone from her hand.
Ms McKenna said: “I was really shocked. I could not believe that it happened and I was angry I couldn’t respond to the patient who needed my help.”
The 32-year-old was not hurt in the attack, which happened in the early evening of July 25 on a street near the British Museum, but has treated several victims who have been seriously injured by moped muggers.
Levels of moped-related crime have recently rocketed, with the number of moped-enabled offences recorded by Metropolitan Police between January and May reaching 8,192 – just 905 fewer than last year’s total.
The number of moped-related crimes is expected to rise significantly throughout the year after a string of robberies and violence carried out by moped riders in London since May, including acid attacks on food delivery drivers in July.
Ms McKenna added: “Sadly, this type of attack is common. They are hurting people. They are putting other people in danger on the roads and pavements but they are also a danger to themselves.
“I have been called out to, and treated, youths who have had accidents on their mopeds.”
Scotland Yard has warned people using their mobile phones in busy streets to be aware of people on mopeds or bikes nearby and to make use of the security features on mobile phones.
Despite growing concern about the increase in moped attacks, Ms McKenna returned to work the following day to show the muggers she would not be beaten.
“If I didn’t go back to work, they would win. I want to keep doing my job which is caring for and treating people in London,” she said.
“I don’t feel unsafe on my bike in London. Most of the time people are so friendly and appreciative of the job we do.”
Paul Cook, London Ambulance Service operations manager, said: “It is appalling for a paramedic to be targeted while on duty and we will work with the police to identify and prosecute those who did this.”