20th Jan, 2021

Man who broke paramedic's jaw in vicious Coventry attack is jailed for seven years

Tristan Harris 24th Nov, 2020 Updated: 25th Nov, 2020

A MAN who beat up a paramedic so badly he needed an metal plate put in his broken jaw has been jailed for seven years and two months.

Chris Cooling, 40, from West Midlands Ambulance Service, was called to treat Jamie Davies in Winifred Avenue, Earlsdon, Coventry, after he reported having breathing difficulties.

Davies attacked Mr Cooling punching him in the face breaking his jaw.

Davies sped away, crashing into the ambulance as he drove off, but police spotted him behind the wheel of his damaged Vauxhall Meriva the next day in Holyhead Road.

The 21-year-old was charged with causing grievous bodily harm and on Tuesday was sent to prison after pleading guilty at Coventry Crown Court.

As well as the jail time, Davies was also banned from driving for three years.

Mr Cooling, aged 40, was on a liquid-only diet for four weeks following surgery and has not yet returned to operational duties due to ongoing jaw pain and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

He said he was extremely happy with the sentence and hoped it would act as deterrent to others attacking emergency service workers.

“This incident has had a massive impact on me – I have so far lost seven months of my life to this attack and I am not yet able to resume my career, a career that I love.

“This court case has re-opened old wounds and I fear I will always have to live with the fear of something like this happening again.

“Like my colleagues, I come to work to help people.

“Whilst I suffered particularly severe injuries many others have also been attacked.”

Mr Cooling thanked West Midlands Ambulance Service for its support, West Midlands Police for its quick response and the Crown Prosecution Service for putting such a strong case together.

Coventry senior operations manager, Dan Swain, added: “This sort of attack cannot be allowed to happen again and I am so pleased the judge took such tough action.

“I have accompanied too many staff to similar trials and never seen such a strong outcome.

“I really hope that it makes the point that this sort of attack is not acceptable and that other members of the judiciary follow this lead.”

West Midlands Ambulance Service (WMAS) Chief Executive, Anthony Marsh, said he was horrified and the length of Mr Cooling’s recovery showed the severity of the assault.

“Not only has it been awful for him, but it has robbed the public of a hard-working member of NHS staff at a time when the health service is under immense pressure.”

He vowed to work with the police to bring anyone who attacked his staff in the future to justice.

Coventry Police Commander, Ch Supt Mike O’Hara, said at the time he was ‘sickened’ by the incident.

“Attacks on any emergency services staff will never be tolerated but this was a particularly sickening incident on an NHS worker who was on the frontline of our national efforts to tackle coronavirus.

“I think I speak for the whole of Coventry in wishing the paramedic well in his continued recovery.”

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