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Independents' Day

Prisoner who held GP at knifepoint is given longer sentence

A young inmate who held a GP captive while threatening him with a makeshift ‘knife’ has had his sentence extended.

Jonathan Ndila took out a toothbrush melded with a razor blade after attending a GP surgery at HMP Brinsford in Featherstone.

The 20-year-old, who had gone there ostensibly for treatment to a hand injury, brandished the customised weapon at Dr Nabeel Malik, the two-day trial at Stafford Crown Court heard.

During police interviews Ndila alleged that he had pulled the knife on himself whilst asking the doctor for help, claiming that he had been hearing voices and had not been treated for it.

He pleaded not guilty to false imprisonment, unauthorised possession in prison of a knife or offensive weapon and assault by beating on March 31 last year.

Jurors were told that Dr Malik was in a consultation room at the young offenders’ institution near Wolverhampton, sitting with his back to the door, when Ndila walked in just before 11am.

The inmate sat down next to the GP and told him his hand was hurting as the result of a fight he had been in a few days earlier, prosecutor Mr Julian Taylor told the jury.

The defendant then ‘suddenly’ got up and attempted to wedge the door shut with a nearby chair.

A colleague rushed to raise the alert while another medic leaned against the door to stop it shutting. Prison officers arrived on the scene and tried to diffuse the situation but Ndila pulled out the hand-made ‘knife’, brandishing it in the air, jurors were told.

The inmate, of Tulse Hill, Lambeth, then demanded a transfer out of Brinsford.

The incident lasted for just over five minutes before Ndila handed the blade to one of the medical team. He was taken to a segregation unit following the disturbance.

After four hours of deliberation, the jury found him guilty of false imprisonment and unauthorised possession in prison of a knife. He was cleared of the assault charge.

He was sentenced to a total of three years behind bars. The judge made an order for the destruction of the makeshift weapon.

Dc Sean Corbett, of Staffordshire Police, said: 'This was an unprovoked incident and an extremely distressing and frightening experience for the doctor.

'The doctor was there to help the prisoner who had reported an injury.'

'Thankfully it was brought to a safe and swift resolution by prison officers.'

Readers' comments (5)

  • Let's see how much of that sentence he serves. I'm guessing it'll be less than a year. British prisons are a holiday camp.

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  • 'Cleared of the assault charge". WHY?
    If you cut us doctors, do we not bleed?
    If you poison us doctors, do we not die?
    Can you clarify jury members, did we volunteer to be beaten?

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  • When I applied to remove a patient from my list after he drew a bread knife on me at my surgery, the PCT (then) tried to talk me out of it on the grounds that it would ‘cause a lot of work’. Zero tolerance doesn’t apply to GPs

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  • I am not holding my breath with the sentence for our soft judges.

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  • Secure environments GP

    Anyone who has worked in a prison knows how staff come close to violence or suffer violence every day. You have to be hyper-vigilant and resilient. Some prisoners are very respectful, others are far from it. Much doesn't even get to trial. Have de-escalated some situations but trying to do this when a prisoner high on MAMBA or psychotic is scary as hell (even when makeshift weapons are not being held towards you, many objects in a clinic could become weapons). In the community it can be just as bad, and you are even more in the dark knowing even less about their risk profile. Some days are awful but you go back....

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