Teen spat blood in paramedic’s face during treatment, court hears


A teenager bit and spat blood in the face of a paramedic treating him for assault injuries, the High Court has heard.

William Hinton also allegedly attacked another ambulance crew member before turning on police officers called to the scene in Whiteabbey, Co Antrim.

A judge was told he has no memory of the incident on May 1 having blacked out following an earlier drinking session.

But his lawyer acknowledged the 19-year-old’s hopes of joining the armed forces may now be damaged.

Hinton, of Ballyfore Park, Newtownabbey, faces charges of assault occasioning actual bodily harm, two counts of criminal damage and three of assault on police.

He was granted bail but banned from drinking any alcohol.

The court heard police arrived in Whiteabbey village to discover three members of an ambulance crew restraining him on the ground.

A prosecution lawyer said: “One of the paramedics indicated the applicant spat blood in his face, punched him, kicked him and bit him in the hand, for which he required hospital treatment.”

It was claimed Hinton also spat on his colleague before being arrested and taken into custody.

A police van used to transport him was later found to be covered in blood.

Hinton then allegedly urinated and spat over the floor of his cell.

He later claimed to have no memory of the incident because he had been drinking heavily.

Defence counsel Sean O’Hare said his client took drink that day after the pressure of another unrelated court case was lifted from him.

“Effectively he blacked out,” his barrister told the court.

“He appears to have been the victim of an attack himself. Paramedics spoke to him and they had to bring him to the ground for his own safety.

“Against that backdrop the alleged offences occurred.”

Although Mr O’Hare said Hinton’s next memory was of waking up in the police station, he indicated that any dispute to the allegations was unlikely.

“It had been his intention to seek employment in the armed services, but that’s unlikely to be a viable option for him,” the barrister added.

The decision by police not to oppose his release was described by the judge as “charitable”.

Granting bail, Mr Justice McCloskey also imposed a night-time curfew.