Assaults on emergency workers condemned after Notts firefighter punched

Firefighters were called when a settee was burning close to a house. However, occupant Mark Armstrong objected to how he was spoken to and become abusive. Police were called, before Armstrong approached a firefighter and punched him to the head.

The victim, who declined to be named, said: "The punch hit my protective helmet which prevented me from being hurt, but I felt it was hard enough to have caused me a lot of pain had I not been wearing it. "He finally backed off and went back into his house. I then heard a bang on the side of the truck which I later discovered was small rock having hit the nearside of the fire truck which caused a dent.

"We stayed outside the address as I still wanted to fully extinguish the fire and ensure nothing had spread to the house." "After about 10 minutes or so the rest of the crew were allowed to access to rear garden of the premise to extinguish the fire and make it safe. "The assault was totally unprovoked.

Luckily my helmet prevented any serious injury to my head, but the gate hitting my hands caused me to feel slight discomfort after the incident and into the following day."

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Armstrong, of Northfield Way, Retford, admitted assault of an emergency worker and was jailed for 12 weeks, suspended for 18 months. PC Carl Forman, who led the case, said: "It's unacceptable for the very people who dedicate their lives to protecting the public from harm to come under physical and verbal attack. "For communities to be protected, we must stand together to protect our frontline.

Assaults on police, fire and ambulance workers, and indeed other public sector workers doing their job, will simply not be tolerated."

Jonathan Holford, Nottinghamshire Fire & Rescue Service group manager, said: "Attacks on our crews, and other emergency service workers, are completely unacceptable.

"Our staff work hard to protect the communities of Nottinghamshire, so when they're attacked whilst trying to keep the public safe, it is extremely disappointing."