Sidmouth man admits punching medic treating him

PUBLISHED: 10:01 31 January 2009 | UPDATED: 12:25 17 June 2010

A SIDMOUTH man who suffers from psychosis admitted assaulting a paramedic who was trying to help him. Appearing at Central Devon Magistrates on Tuesday, Michael Luke O Donnell, 40, of Lock Close, pleaded guilty to assault by beating and resisting arrest.

A SIDMOUTH man who suffers from psychosis admitted assaulting a paramedic who was trying to help him.

Appearing at Central Devon Magistrates on Tuesday, Michael Luke O'Donnell, 40, of Lock Close, pleaded guilty to assault by beating and resisting arrest.

The court heard O'Donnell assaulted a paramedic who came to his aid after he was involved in a car crash on January 3 in Seaton.

David Bowen, prosecuting, said: "As the paramedic opened the door and was endeavouring to speak to the defendant to check his well being, the defendant punched his face causing injuries to the mouth."

Police officers, who had been called to the scene following the crash, stepped in and O'Donnell then tried to bite a female officer.

He became increasingly "agitated" and had to be put in leg restraints by the police.

Jeremy Wickham, defending, said his client has a history of mental illness and during the incident was "in a completely different place in his mind."

He said O' Donnell had no recollection of the event apart from thinking he was somewhere else and "voices were in his head."

Shortly after the arrest O'Donnell was hospitalised at Wonford under the Mental Health Act and was only released a day before his court appearance.

O'Donnell also pleaded guilty to possessing 2.12 grams of cannabis which Mr Whickham described as a "small amount for personal use".

Sentencing was adjourned until February 18 when a standard delivery report, compiled by the probation service, will be presented to magistrates.

Chairman of the panel, John Middleton, warned O'Donnell he may be given a custodial sentence depending on the findings of the report.

He said: "It was an appalling act on your behalf. Attacking public servants who came to your assistance is a dreadful thing to do."

O'Donnell was released on unconditional bail.


If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Sidmouth Herald. Click the link in the orange box above for details.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Latest from the Sidmouth Herald