Sunday 17 June 2018

Paramedics categorised canal stab victim's injuries as 'life-threatening', court told

Central Criminal Court
Central Criminal Court

Natasha Reid

Paramedics categorised as ‘life-threatening’ the injuries to a man found on a roadside, who had been stabbed 28 times before being locked into the boot of a car that was pushed into a canal.

A paramedic gave the evidence to the Central Criminal Court this morning in the trial of a 22-year-old Louth man, charged with attempting to murder a fellow Louth man twice on the one night.

Paul Crosby of Rathmullen Park in Drogheda has pleaded not guilty to attempting to murder, falsely imprisoning and causing serious harm to Gerard Boyle (22) on 10 November, 2016 at Knockcommon, Beauparc, Slane in Co Meath.

He has also pleaded not guilty to the attempted murder of Mr Boyle later on the same date at Boyne Canal, Drogheda.

The paramedic told Patrick Gageby SC, prosecuting, that he was called to a scene on the Slane Road out of Drogheda around 10.45 that night. The court had already heard that Mr Boyle had been found lying up against a stop sign, soaked in blood and water.

“The patient was sitting on the ground just with tracksuit bottoms, nothing on top,” he recalled. “He was in a lot of distress, he had an increased respiratory rate. When I shone a torch on him, I saw a number of puncture wounds to his torso.”

The paramedic and his colleagues got him into an ambulance, where they further assessed him.

“I could hear very little air entering one side of his chest,” he said. “The oxygen in his blood was 84 percent, so low. It was obvious he had a collapsed lung.”

He said he began counting the patient’s stab wounds, but stopped at about 20, and just wrote ‘20 +’ in his notes. He put him on ‘high-flow oxygen’ and began dressing his wounds.

“We decided to load and go as he probably needed chest drains,” he explained. “Life threatening was our clinical impression and we alerted E.D. to have a team ready in resus.”

He explained that they were just four or five minutes from the hospital. Had they been further away, he would have had to make other arrangements.

He handed the patient over to the trauma team and, as expected, witnessed ‘two chest drains going in’.

The trial continues before Mr Justice Patrick McCarthy and a jury of five women and six men.

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