A woman who punched a police officer and assaulted a nurse before going on to cause a significant disturbance in the Queen Alexandra Hospital (QAH) Emergency Department has escaped going to jail.
Jamie Tompkins was taken to the QAH after she was detained by police officers following her disorderly conduct while being intoxicated at ‘The Hard’ public house in Portsea.
During her initial contact with the police, Tompkins lashed out and punched a police officer who was dealing with her.
Tompkins was taken to A&E after her violent conduct caused an old injury to bleed.
The 22-year-old, of Cumberland Street, Portsea, was de-arrested when she arrived at the hospital.
However, Tompkins quickly began an onslaught of hostile and insulting behaviour towards NHS staff and other A&E patients.
Tompkins smirks as she leaves court| Credit: Portsmouth.co.uk
The behaviour of Tompkins has been branded ‘completely unacceptable’ by Nicole Cornelius, director of workforce and organisational development at Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust.
The officer in charge of the case, PC Simon Collins, described Tompkins’ actions as ‘vile’.
At Portsmouth Magistrates’ Court, prosecutor Lucy Linington said:
‘She jumped over the reception desk causing damage to a printer and a computer screen which was worth £889.92.
“She proceeds to assault nurse Debbie Johnstone”.
The court was also told that Tomkins swore at Johnstone before she ‘threatened to stab’ another staff member, Patricia Smith, with ‘knives and forks’.
In a victim impact statement, Nurse Johnston, who has worked at the hospital for 16 years, said that Tompkins’ conduct was ‘the worst behaviour she had ever seen’.
The damage caused to the IT equipment at QAH A&E | Credit: Portsmouth Police
Investigating officer PC Collins told Portsmouth.co.uk:
‘No one deserves to be attacked while at work, especially those NHS workers who have sacrificed their festive celebrations with family to be there for people in their hour of need.
‘Tompkins’ behaviour that night was vile towards two members of hospital staff who were simply trying to help her.
‘There is no excuse for what she did’.
‘We take all assaults against our colleagues in the emergency services seriously and will take action to ensure those responsible are held accountable.’
Tompkins was given a 16-week sentence suspended for 12 months for two counts of assaulting an emergency worker, threatening and abusive behaviour with intent to cause fear of violence and criminal damage.
She admitted to all of the charges.
Tompkins must pay £400 in compensation with £100 each to PC White and Ms Johnstone, and £200 to the hospital for the NHS equipment damaged, despite causing nearly five times that amount of damage.
An NHS Staff member who works in the Emergency Department where the attack happened told Emergency Services News:
“This sentence outlines what a load of c**p ‘zero tolerance’ is.
“Her fine didn’t even cover the cost of the damage caused. She spat in the face of the nurse and launched herself through the window of the receptionist and grabbed a cutlery knife and threatened them.
“Is this pretty typical of the legal system!?”
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