Man jailed for bogus emergency calls, abusing paramedics

John Harvey, who has a history of making hundreds of bogus calls for help, was jailed when he began asking bystanders to call for him instead


SWANSEA, Wales — A man with a history of making hundreds of bogus emergency calls was jailed when he began asking others to make the calls for him.

Wales Online reported that John Harvey, 72, who was banned by a court from making unnecessary emergency calls after calling more than 250 times, broke the ban by asking strangers to call instead.

Police said Harvey told two people on the street he needed help in an effort to get them to call for emergency services.

John Harvey, 72, who was banned by a court from making unnecessary emergency calls after calling more than 250 times, broke the ban by asking strangers to call instead. (Photo/Swansea Magistrates’ Court)
John Harvey, 72, who was banned by a court from making unnecessary emergency calls after calling more than 250 times, broke the ban by asking strangers to call instead. (Photo/Swansea Magistrates’ Court)

The Welsh Ambulance Service took Harvey to court over the matter, and said sending crews to bogus calls can have a “significant impact” on the agency. The agency added that they took Harvey to court as a last resort.

Prosecutors said after Harvey got a bystander to call for help on Feb. 15, he was abusive to paramedics who responded to his home before he was transported to the hospital and discharged.

Two days later, Harvey asked another bystander to call for help, claiming he was experiencing chest pains. Paramedics responded to his home again, but did not transport him after an assessment.

Welsh Ambulance Service said the two incidents took up four and a half hours of time and cost the agency $910.

Harvey was sentenced to 18 weeks in prison.

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