Lurgan man trashed £5,000 worth of medical equipment

The man attacked paramedics before smashing up the ambulance
The man attacked paramedics before smashing up the ambulance

A man who attacked paramedics and trashed their ambulance has been handed a seven-month suspended jail sentence.

Belfast Magistrates’ Court heard Keith Edward Brown caused more than £5,000 worth of damage to highly sensitive medical equipment.

The 43-year-old also seized a fire extinguisher and used it to shatter the windscreen of a car parked nearby in Greenisland, Co Antrim.

Brown, of Ashleigh Crescent in Lurgan, admitted three charges of common assault and a further two counts of criminal damage.

He turned violent after visiting a female friend in April last year.

Prosecutors said he assaulted two male crew members who found him sitting in the middle of the road outside her house.

Brown entered the ambulance and started throwing equipment about, before reappearing with part of a defibrillator, the court heard.

One of the paramedics was hit on the shoulder by something thrown from the vehicle.

District Judge Fiona Bagnall was shown photographs of the “disarray” and informed that the damage caused was in excess of £5,000.

The costs of repairing the car windscreen were put at a further £800.

Brown also assaulted the woman he had gone to meet before being found hiding in nearby hedges.

His lawyer accepted it had been “an inexplicable and highly unpleasant incident” involving violence directed at members of the emergency services.

He argued that Brown has mental health issues and may have thought the ambulance staff were prison officers.

Judge Bagnall decided to impose a seven-month prison sentence, suspended for two years.

Ordering him to pay a total of £950 in compensation for attacking the ambulance and car, she added: “It is to recognise where damage of this nature is caused there has to be a consequence.”