Teens arrested after attacking paramedics

Cabell County EMS director Gordon Merry says one of the teens stuck a gun in a paramedic's face.
Published: Jan. 31, 2022 at 10:52 PM EST
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HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) - Two 19-year-olds were arrested following a scary incident involving Cabell County EMS workers.

According to criminal complaints, an employee at a gas station at the corner of 6th Avenue and 16th Street in Huntington called 911 around 5:40 Sunday morning and reported a vehicle in the parking lot with people lying in the seats.

Cabell County EMS director Gordon Merry says two ambulances and four paramedics responded.

The complaints say when 19-year-old Jacob Ashworth, who was in the driver’s seat, was woken, he became aggressive.

“They (the paramedics) got out,” Merry said. “They announced themselves, at which point the individual in the car grabbed a firearm and stuck it in the paramedic’s face. The paramedic removed the weapon from him.”

The complaint says the passenger, 19-year-old Brayden Womack, also became aggressive after waking.

“The other man had a knife, and they had some challenges until police arrived,” Merry said. “It’s terrible. It shocked me.”

Merry says the incident has them rethinking whether they’ll continue being first on scene for such calls.

“Very honestly, it’s going to cause us to re-evaluate,” he said. “We’re probably more than likely not going to respond to those until law enforcement is on scene. I can’t afford to lose a paramedic over something like that.”

He says troubling behavior in such scenarios is not new.

“It bothers me a lot,” Merry said. “We’re experiencing more problems with people laying down in vehicles. They’re either drunk or a possible overdose. They’re a little belligerent.”

The two suspects were charged with battery on a governmental representative and obstructing an officer.

Merry says the paramedics who dealt with the situation are back on the job.

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