‘He is being treated like the victim here’: Paramedic bashed by man who escaped jail time speaks out
A paramedic who was badly beaten by a drug-affected man says the legal system has let down emergency service workers.
Monica and her male colleague were assaulted while working in Brunswick in January.
Yesterday, her attacker, James Haberfield, escaped jail time because he has autism and was mentally ill at the time of the attack.
A magistrate gave the 22-year-old an 18-month community service order for attacking the paramedics.
A mandatory jail time of six months for assaulting an emergency services worker was introduced last year, but Haberfield was ruled exempt from the sentence.
“I was in disbelief,” Monica said of the legal proceedings yesterday.
“He is being treated like the victim here,” she told 3AW’s Neil Mitchell.
“There’s no punishment for him putting drugs in his system, and punching me in the face, and pinning me at the back of the ambulance.
“I’m upset and disappointed that our safety really doesn’t mean much to the court system.”
Monica said she feared for her life during the incident.
“All I could do was scream, I couldn’t move my arms, I didn’t even think to self defend,” she said.
“There’s no way I could have gotten out of that.”
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