Rugby First Responders thankful for support after youths attack their car with a rock and hurl abuse at them

Rugby's First Responders have been left shocked but pleased at the support received after a gang of youths attacked their response car with a rock before hurling abuse at them and refusing to apologise.

Thursday, 12th July 2018, 12:57 pm
Updated Tuesday, 17th July 2018, 6:43 pm
The Responders' marked vehicle, which was thankfully unscathed by the attack. Photo courtesy of Rugby First Responders.

The pair of volunteers were driving their response vehicle, which is marked as a community first responder ambulance, on Newbold Road at around 7.30pm last night (July 11) when five youths threw a stone, hitting the car's rear offside window.

Rugby First Responders coordinator Gemma Barrow told the Advertiser: "We then turned the car around and saw them throwing stones at buildings.

"We pulled up alongside them to ask if they were quite finished and we got a horrific torrent of abuse in return."

Mrs Barrow said her colleague informed the youths that the car is fitted with a dash cam which had recorded their faces.

She said: "We even told them if they apologise that would be it, if not, we would be taking the dash cam footage to the police."

The five youths, aged around 14, refused to apologise and continued to abuse the volunteers - so the incident has been reported to Warwickshire Police.

Mrs Barrow said: "There were three lads and two girls, and all of them were shouting and swearing at us."

The responders were unhurt as the rock failed to break the car's window - but Mrs Barrow said it could have gone very differently had the youths thrown it at the driver's window, which was open.

She said: "Luckily no damage was done to the vehicle, but my biggest concern is that my colleague was driving and his window was open at the time - he could have been seriously injured if they had thrown the rock in that direction."

Despite the attack on the response car, which is funded through the generosity of Rugbeians and crewed by volunteers, Mrs Barrow said the first responders are deeply thankful for the public's support.

Last night the group took to their Facebook page to post about the incident and were quickly inundated with positive messages.

Those commenting praised the responders and expressed digust at the youths. One wrote: "They have no respect for anyone anymore. What a sad world we live in. You are doing a fantastic job."

Mrs Barrow said the post has so far reached over 8,000 people, increasing their 'likes' and helping to make increasing numbers of people aware of the vital service the responders provide for Rugbeians.

Rugby First Responders work with the ambulance service to respond to 999 calls and give emergency, life-saving treatment. All of the equipment the responders use is paid for through lottery funding and charity.

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