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W. Virginia Paramedics Recall Knife-Wielding Suspect

CHARLESTON, W.Va – Two Kanawha County Paramedics are telling their story about being in an ambulance with a man accused of trying to stab them.

Lauren Sparks and Jonathan Taylor spoke to WCHS-TV about Saturday’s incident.

Kanawha County Sheriff Mike Rutherford says deputies had found 27-year-old Richard William Thornton of Parkersburg along a road in Elkview on Saturday.

WCHS-TV screenshot
Paramedic Jonathan Taylor says his training kicked in when he and his partner were confronted with a patient armed with a knife in the back of their ambulance.

While being transported to a hospital in Charleston by ambulance, Thornton removed the straps securing him to a cot.

Rutherford says Thorton then pulled out a knife and tried to stab a medic. The driver stopped and both medics left the ambulance, and Thornton chased after them. He was later located at a convenience store.

Taylor credits his training for knowing how to handle the situation.

Further reading

How One Paramedic is Recovering from PTSD