A paramedic has admitted he’s “gutted” after the two women who assaulted him have successfully appealed their jail terms, and will now escape spending time behind bars for the horrific crime.
Amanda Warren, 33, and Caris Underwood, 20, were originally sentenced to jail sentences of six and four months, after pleading guilty to causing injury to 63-year-old Paul Judd, multiple news outlets report.
However, they reportedly appealed their jail terms in the Victorian County Court on Tuesday, and will no longer have to spend any time behind bars for the assault.
Now, ambulance workers have begun protesting the shock decision, by spraying graffiti messages across their vehicles. Photos, shared on social media, show ambulances with “It’s not OK to assault paramedics” sprayed across windscreens and windows.
According to Nine News, Judd broke down on hearing the decision, and said he was “gutted”, before adding: “In one word, probably injustice – I just feel that justice hasn’t been done.”
Judge Cotterell reportedly told the court that Warren and Underwood’s difficult childhoods and young families meant they shouldn’t be jailed.
“Whilst having enormous sympathy for the victims who were attacked while going about their duties as emergency workers … I have reached the conclusion that imposing the sentence at this stage would achieve little,” she reportedly said.
Under Victorian law, anyone who intentionally injures an emergency worker must be imprisoned for at least six months, unless there are special circumstances.
Ambulance Employees Australian Union secretary Steve McGhie hit out at the decision, and told 3AW: “I’m quite disgusted with the outcome.”
Ambulance workers shared photos of their protest messages on their vehicles to Twitter page ‘Fair Go paramedic’, while the organisation wrote: “Paramedic after Paramedic, Crew after Crew, branch after branch, we all stand in defiance to today’s ruling.”
Victorian Liberal leader Matthew Guy also weighed in, and tweeted his anger. He wrote: “A complete failure of the Victorian justice system.”
Judd was punched and left with a broken foot in the drunk assault in 2016, the court previously heard, as he and another paramedic tried to treat a patient. He has reportedly been unable to return to work since, and has required multiple surgeries.
3AW reports the women have instead been ordered to serve community corrections orders.