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Swindon woman pleads guilty to assaulting a paramedic

Vanessa Blakey, a 25-year-old woman from Swindon, pleaded guilty at Swindon Magistrates Court on Thursday 2 February 2023 to grievous bodily harm and assaulting an emergency worker from South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SWASFT).

Paramedic, Nick Brown, from Wiltshire was punched, knocked unconscious and left with a broken eye socket after he and student paramedic, Callum, responded to a 999 call to help Ms Blakey. 

Ms Blakey was sentenced on Thursday 2 February to 12 months in prison, suspended for two years. She was also ordered to pay compensation to the value of £100 and given a rehabilitation activity requirement. The incident took place on Tuesday 29 March last year.

Ms Blakey punched Nick in the head, resulting in him hitting the front of the Rapid Response Vehicle and then the ground, leaving him unconscious.

Nick was taken to hospital, where it was discovered he had a broken eye socket. Callum was also kicked during the incident and suffered broken ribs.

During the hearing on the 2 February 2023 at Swindon Magistrates Court, Vanessa Blakey pleaded guilty to the following charges:

  • Assault by beating of an emergency worker
  • Wound/inflict grievous bodily harm without intent

Nick Brown, SWASFT paramedic, said: “When I woke up on the floor, I couldn’t quite believe what had happened. Nobody should be frightened to do their job, especially in a caring profession. Anyone that assaults an emergency worker should be ashamed of themselves.

“Sadly, we are often verbally abused, but thankfully physical abuse is less common, though it still happens. Body-worn cameras go a long way to reduce that risk.

“I hope this shocking footage and successful prosecution sends out a strong message that any assault, physical or verbal, will not be tolerated.

“I'd like to recognise the support I have received from SWASFT, the police and the care I received at the Great Western Hospital in the days following the assault.

“I would also like to praise the actions of Callum. His rapid intervention and calm decision making, despite being injured himself, minimised the harm done.”

Mike Pavey, Crime and Violence Reduction Officer at SWASFT, said: “What happened to Nick and Callum is shocking and completely unacceptable. This was a vicious, unprovoked attack on a crew that was trying to help someone.

“The role of our people is tough - physically, mentally and emotionally - without the patients we are trying to help assaulting us.

“Please help us to help you, and treat us with the dignity and respect we deserve.”

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South Western Ambulance Charity

The South Western Ambulance Charity, founded in 1995, uses gifted monies to benefit those in our communities who use our service and to improve the welfare of the staff and volunteers of the South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust. 

Our charitable support covers Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, Devon, Dorset, Gloucestershire, Somerset and Wiltshire including Bristol and Swindon.

If you would like to show your appreciation for the care that you or your loved one has received from us in the form of a charitable donation please visit our online giving website: Donate to South Western Ambulance Charity | Give as you Live Donate