‘I don’t feel safe anymore’ – TV paramedics recall terrifying moment man stabbed them when they were called to treat him
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Martyn Smith, 53, launched the frenzied attack after ambulance workers Deena Evans, 40, and Michael Hipgrave, 52, attended his home in Wolverhampton.
Shocking bodycam footage shows the moment Smith lunged at the pair with two large kitchen knives in front of his mum as they carried out a welfare check.
Neighbours reported "blood curdling screams" and the pair shouting "please help, he's got a knife" during the terrifying incident on July 6 last year.
Harrowing pictures show the pair, who starred in the TV show Inside the Ambulance, being treated by terrified colleagues and Deena bleeding heavily on a stretcher.
Smith was tasered by police and arrested at the scene on Stephens Close following the attack which lasted just 12 seconds.
The two medics were rushed to Birmingham's Queen Elizabeth Hospital and both went on to make full recoveries and were able to return to work.
Deena suffered a punctured lung in the attack and spent three days in hospital following surgery.
Michael, who is known as Mick, was stabbed in the back and was discharged from hospital the same day.
Smith previously denied two counts of wounding with intent but changed his pleas to guilty at Wolverhampton Crown Court in April.
Today (9 July) he was sentenced to nine years in jail to be served concurrently and he will also serve five years on licence.
The court heard the West Midlands Ambulance Service workers attended Smith's home with a police officer to carry out a welfare check when the attack took place.
Deena previously told how she was left haunted by the incident and relives the horrific attack "every time I close my eyes".
‘I lay in your garden dying’
In an emotive victim impact statement she bravely read out in court today, Deena said: "I am a paramedic; I am also a sister, a mother and a daughter.
"I go to work to help people, I love my job, the patients, and the people I work with.
"It is impossible to say no part of my life has been affected because of what happened.
"I trained for three years and have two degrees, all to do my job, to come and help people like you, like on the 6th July, where as I stepped through your door, I came to help you.
"I said your name, asked if you were ok, and then you jumped out and stabbed me.
"Not in the arm, or the leg, you stabbed me in my chest, and then you stabbed my colleague while he was trying to protect me.
"You were so angry, if you hadn’t have stumbled would you have carried on stabbing? Your mum was stood right next to us.
"I lay on the grass bleeding heavily, whilst people tried to help me, I drifted in and out of consciousness, and thought of my family and children, and worried I would never see them again, whilst I lay in your garden dying.
"I had to be treated by friends, which was not only hard for me, but was hard for them too, I sobbed whilst they treated me, apologising to them for being in that position.
"I developed complications at hospital and required emergency surgery a few hours later, I have never been so ill, at that point I wanted to die.
"Physically the injury has impacted on my life, for a while I was unable to use my arm, and for me, who is totally independent have to rely on someone else to wash me, wash my hair, and butter my toast is soul destroying.
"Due to the chest muscle damage, since then I have been in pain every single day since the attack.
"I have physio on my arm, and have been left with numbness which maybe permanent.
"I will forever look down and see my scar across my chest, painful and lumpy, a constant reminder of you and what you did.
"Everyday I take a variety of tablets three times a day to ease the pain, often leaving me in tears.
"The incident has impacted me financially, I have lost money from extra shifts I would pick up, which as a single parent of three children I relied on to get by.
"I am currently living on charity raised by colleagues, just to keep my head above water, and have had to go against everything that is right and return to work earlier than I should have, just to get by.
"The incident impacted on my family, imagine receiving the call 'your daughter/sister/mother has been stabbed and we don’t think she is going to survive'.
"That’s the call my elderly parents and sisters received, who then had to tell my young children aged six,11,12, my whole family were devastated, unable to cope themselves, and due to Covid, none of my family could visit.
"I felt alone and scared sat on a hospital bed bleeding through my dressings.
"My children no longer feel safe, they told me they were worried ‘the bad man who hurt mummy would come back’, it keeps them awake at night too.
"However even though they were children, they had to wipe my tears, and stay strong for me, helping me to bath, or tie shoelaces.
"Imagine how helpless my family felt, and imagine how helpless I felt as a mother.
"The incident has affected me a lot mentally. I see your face, the exact moment you stabbed me, over and over, I see the moment you looked me square in the eye, before you lunged at me holding a knife in each hand in the air.
"I see that image at night when I try to sleep, you're there whether I close or open my eyes, that same stare.
"I have flashbacks constantly throughout the day; I can never unsee that image. I don’t feel safe anymore, not even in my own home.
"I have rituals of window and door checking repeatedly throughout the day, hyper vigilant and anxious that something bad will happen, and for this I take sedatory medication just to help calm me down.
"I panic when I leave the house, just to do simple things like shopping or seeing friends, always looking for the exit.
"That day, you took all that I am away from me; you took my confidence, my humour, my trusting nature, and my happiness.
"My hair began falling out through stress and I have had counselling sessions just to be able to get a part of me back.
"Losing all those parts of me caused me to suffer depression, alongside the anxiety and PTSD, again for which I am medicated.
"I feel empty, I feel nothing inside, you have taken all that I am away.
"Still to this day, almost a year later I am having treatment for the physical and mental damage you have caused; do you know how it feels to know you are dying?
"To know you may never see the people you care about again? To lie on the floor trying to administer life saving treatment to your colleague even though you know you’re dying yourself?
"Everyone in life has a choice, life is made up of choices, everything in life is affected by the choices we make.
"That day you made a choice to pick up two large knives that you knew could possibly cause fatal damage, you made a choice to stab me with those knives, and that choice you made took away a year of my life.
"The effects of it both mentally and physically will stay with me forever, everyday I relive your face, and that knife in my chest.
"We nearly lost our lives making a choice to come and help you.
"I struggle to see justification for what you did to me, and I hope you see my face and you remember mine, and the anguish you caused, all the medications I take just to feel normal, and the pain I am constantly in.
"Your sentence will not give me back the year I lost, neither will it take away my painful and ugly scar, or the mental stress you caused.
"However hopefully, your sentence will be enough to act as a deterrent to others, who think it is ok to attack other emergency services, when they have made a choice to simply do a job."
More than £4,000 was raised for the two ambulance workers through a JustGiving page at the time.
WMAS Trust Chief Executive Anthony Marsh, said after the case: “The events in Wolverhampton last summer were absolutely devastating.
"For two paramedics to be stabbed so horrifically whilst simply trying to help a patient is sickening.
"I want to commend the outstanding resilience of both Mick and Deena in their wishes to come back to work and continue to help their patients after everything they’ve been through.
"I admire their bravery in openly discussing the attack in order to raise awareness of the dangers paramedics and other front line emergency service workers face on a daily basis.
"Assaults on ambulance staff, whether it be physical or verbal, are not okay.
"I hope today’s sentence acts as a deterrent and sends a strong message that attacks on emergency service workers will not be tolerated.
"I want to also place my thanks on record to the crews who attended Mick and Deena and had the heart-breaking job of saving their lives.
"My gratitude also goes to the police officers at the scene. If it weren’t for their quick interventions on the day, the result could have been even worse.”