Thug bit out at paramedic

PUBLISHED: 09:26 22 May 2009 | UPDATED: 21:47 31 May 2010

A THUG who attacked and bit a paramedic who tried carry out a citizen s arrest on him has been ordered to pay his victim £1000 compensation. And a judge ordered that the paramedic should receive a further £400 from public funds for his public spiritednes

A THUG who attacked and bit a paramedic who tried carry out a citizen's arrest on him has been ordered to pay his victim £1000 compensation.

And a judge ordered that the paramedic should receive a further £400 from public funds for his public spiritedness.

Chelmsford Crown Court heard that the incident happened after Peter Kelly, a paramedic based at Stansted Airport, saw 28-year-old Terry Neaster of Soham driving dangerously.

He grabbed Neaster's car keys when he stopped at traffic lights but in the chase that followed Neaster rounded on Mr Kelly and bit him.

Neaster, a former soldier who served in Iraq, pleaded guilty to dangerous driving, assault causing actual bodily harm, having a bladed article and driving with excess alcohol.

He was given 12 months jail suspended for two years, ordered to carry out 150 hours unpaid work and disqualified from driving for 18 months. Neaster was also ordered to pay Mr Kelly's compensation and £500 costs.

Mr Kelly was also awarded the additional £400 for what the judge described as "very, determined and sustained action of commendable civil conduct".

Judge Christopher Ball QC told Neaster : "This was a quite extraordinary incident. Anybody in the sober light of day would realise the brave and public spirited way Mr Kelly intervened. You were a danger to yourself and others."

Prosecutor Dara Islam said Neaster was driving towards Stansted on the M11 at 6.15pm on September 6 last year when Mr Kelly, who was driving to work, spotted him near junction 10.

After seeing him swerve in and out of the hard shoulder Mr Islam said Mr Kelly gave chase and when Neaster stopped at traffic lights he pulled in front of him, got out, could smell drink and told Neaster he was making a citizens arrest, took his car keys and walked off.

The pair fought over the keys; Mr Kelly threw them into the open window of another car at traffic lights, but the driver threw them out and Neaster again got hold of them.

Mr Kelly said Neaster drove off, damaging the parked ambulance before being stopped by another member of the public. A machete was later found in the boot of his car.

Andrea Ferguson, counsel for Neaster, told the court that Neaster had been under pressure at work at the time and had been drinking "to excess".

But she continued : "He has no excuse and has no explanation. He wrote a letter to Mr Kelly apologising and wants to compensate him."

She added that the machete was for hunting.

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