Belfast Telegraph

Drunken Antrim thug McCambridge who spat at paramedics sent to jail

By Nevin Farrell

A thug who sank 12 pints of lager and two shots on July 12 and then assaulted and spat at the paramedics called to his aid has been jailed.

Ryan Robert Patrick McCambridge was yesterday sentenced to four months in prison.

A judge at Coleraine Magistrates Court said it was the worst case of its kind he had heard.

District Judge Liam McNally said it had been well documented that courts will not tolerate that type of behaviour and will afford protection to ambulance staff "who day and daily have to deal with drunks".

McCambridge (20), of Meadowbank in Martinstown near Ballymena, had previously admitted charges including three of assault, two of criminal damage to an ambulance and to the ambulance defibrillator, as well as disorderly behaviour at the Causeway Hospital.

A prosecutor said when police arrived at the hospital McCambridge was "locked" in the ambulance and they could hear shouting and banging coming from inside and when the door was opened he was abusive to officers and ambulance staff.

The ambulance had to be withdrawn from service because he had spat and vomited inside the vehicle and caused £1,761.61 damage to a defibrillator. The clean-up bill was £345.

The prosecutor said an ambulance had picked up the defendant and because of his disruption on the way to the hospital it had to stop five times.

McCambridge had spat at, abused and assaulted staff, calling them "black b*******" and "w******".

One paramedic with 33 years' experience had never experienced such a level of abuse, the prosecutor added.

The lawyer said staff from another ambulance had to be called to help deal with McCambridge, which meant two ambulances were held up for 90 minutes.

When McCambridge arrived at the hospital his behaviour was such that he was returned to the ambulance.

The defendant told police he didn't normally drink but had taken 12 pints of lager and two Aftershock shots and hurt his leg but couldn't recall how.

Defence barrister Ben Thompson said he told his client the most likely outcome was jail which "terrifies" him.

He said the defendant had behaved appallingly and like a "thug", but wished to apologise to ambulance staff and the court and severely regretted his actions.

Judge McNally noted the defendant was a "high achiever" getting nine GCSEs and NVQs in joinery and business & administration and, although he accepted he was totally ashamed, he said "this is probably the worst type of case of this nature I have come across".

He said the starting point was at least a year in jail. However, he had to give discount for a plea of guilty at the first opportunity and the remorse shown as he imposed a four-month jail term.

Taking into account the means of the defendant, the judge said that he would limit compensation to £500.

Belfast Telegraph


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