A MAN who bit, punched and spat at paramedics trying to help him after he had taken spice has been spared jail.

Bradley Smith committed the disgusting acts amid heightened fears of coronavirus after running out of Warrington Hospital.

The 24-year-old also coughed at them while being restrained in an ambulance, after he was spotted knocking on random houses asking for pants.

But despite his ‘gross’ actions, he was told at Liverpool Crown Court he would not be heading to prison on this occasion.

Charles Lander, prosecuting explained how on June 20 last year, the two paramedics and were sat in an ambulance near the entrance to Warrington Hospital when they saw the defendant run out, wearing only a t-shirt and boxer shorts.

They followed him along Lovely Lane in the ambulance, where he was knocking on random doors asking for pants.

Both paramedics told him to stop and to come with them in the ambulance, while police officers also became aware of incident and made their way to the scene.

Smith, who was described as being ‘aggressive’, then spat at, punched and bit one of the paramedics in the rib area.

The attack caused the paramedic to sustain soft tissue damage to his right hand which meant he was unable to work for two weeks.

Warrington Guardian:

Smith had to be restrained by police and the other paramedic on a stretcher, so the defendant responded by coughing and spitting at them.

As a result of his actions, the ambulance had to be deep cleaned and was taken out of service for the rest of the day.

He was subsequently charged with and pleaded guilty to two counts of assaulting an emergency services worker.

Mr Lander also revealed that Smith had one previous conviction for threatening behaviour and possession of a bladed article in a public place.

On that occasion on April 11 last year, he threw a plant pot and spade over his garden wall close to where children were playing.

He then brandished a knife on his neighbour after being told to ‘pack it in’, but was spared jail by way of a community order.

In defence of his client, Alaric Walmsley said: “This defendant has mental health issues and foolishly was experimenting with synthetic drugs, which had a terrible impact on him.

“He is not using those drugs now and has learnt his lesson – he has not committed and further offending since.

“He admitted guilt at first opportunity and has cooperated with police. People do make mistakes, and what more can we ask of them but to hold up their hands and turn up to court.”

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Before sentencing, recorder Michael Taylor said: “There are few things more disgusting than being spat at.

“They were people trying to do their job and help you out, and you spat at them. It is a gross thing to do at any time, especially during the time of Covid.

“You had been taking something called spice – why you were doing that with your problems defeats me.”

Smith, of Buckton Street in Fairfield, was sentenced to a two-year community order, including 60 rehabilitation activity requirement days.

He must also serve a four-month curfew and undertake alcohol abstinence and monitoring for 120 days.

Following his sentencing, PC Cadman, said: “Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, paramedics have gone above and beyond in their role to support some of the most vulnerable residents in our community.

“They have put their own lives at risk in order to protect others and they do not go to work in order to be assaulted.

“The actions taken by Smith that day are totally unacceptable – to bite, cough, punch and spit at people who are trying to help you is indefensible – and I welcome the sentence handed to him.”