Bixter man fined for threatening ambulance worker

A garage foreman whose “extremely aggressive” drink-fuelled behaviour caused an ambulance worker to fear for her safety was fined £600 and ordered to pay a further £200 in compensation to the victim when he appeared from custody at Lerwick Sheriff Court on Monday.

The court heard that John Johnson, 49, who gave his address as Semblister, Bixter, had been drinking heavily at his home on Saturday afternoon and evening when he collapsed, causing his concerned wife to dial 999 for help.

He was taken by ambulance to the Gilbert Bain Hospital but, en route to Lerwick, according to procurator fiscal Duncan MacKenzie, Johnson had become “extremely aggressive” towards a Scottish Ambulance Service worker. He repeatedly ripped off his oxygen mask and threw it around the ambulance, and threatened violence to the extent that the worker became “very concerned” for her safety. The police were called to assist.

Johnson was transferred to a police car but his behaviour continued in the same vein and he kicked the police officer who was driving the vehicle, before eventually having to be transferred to a police van with a cage so that he could be taken to hospital safely.

In a community with only one ambulance to cover the whole of the Mainland, he had taken up over an hour and a half of the staff’s time and Mr MacKenzie described his behaviour as “nothing short of appalling”.

Defence agent Tommy Allan said his client could not remember anything of the incident and was not offering drink as an excuse for his actions but that he had “no history of this kind of behaviour”. He was planning to steer clear of alcohol for “some considerable time”.

He pleaded guilty to shouting, swearing and threatening violence towards ambulance staff and police officers and kicking a constable while she was at the wheel of the police car.

Sheriff Graeme Napier imposed fines totalling £600 and ordered him to pay £200 in compensation to the ambulance service worker for the distress his behaviour had caused her.


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