Paramedic struck off after car park sex act

Wesley Johnson,Press Association
Wednesday 12 August 2009 12:40 BST

A paramedic who was given oral sex in a hospital car park while on duty was today struck off.

Married David Brammer was caught on CCTV with a mystery woman's head in his lap as he sat in the passenger seat of a car parked at Rotherham District General Hospital in June last year.

Brammer, who has since been sacked from the Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust, was found guilty of misconduct at a hearing of the Health Professions Council (HPC) in South London.

Striking Brammer off the register, Derek Adrian-Harris, chair of the panel, said he had committed a "serious, deliberate and reckless act that severely undermined public confidence in the paramedic profession and breached the trust that the employer should have expected to have in him."

Mr Adrian-Harris said Brammer, 53, had had oral sex while on duty and wearing his uniform.

The act would "offend the morals of any right-thinking member of the public," he said.

Brammer's actions breached the trust of his employer and undermined public confidence in the profession.

Mr Adrian-Harris added Brammer had demonstrated "no insight into his actions" and a "lack of understanding" of the impact his actions would have on the profession.

Brammer had denied being given oral sex by the woman whom he had met just twice before, saying he was only trying to comfort a sobbing woman after telling her their fling was over.

Brammer, wearing a blue jacket with a white shirt, blue tie and grey trousers, showed no reaction as the sanctions were read out.

Earlier, Mr Adrian-Harris said the panel found Brammer's fitness to practise was impaired at the time and remains so today.

He said Brammer "failed to maintain high standards of professional conduct" and also failed to understand the "profound unacceptability of his behaviour".

Lance Dodgson, representing Brammer, urged the panel not to strike his client off, saying the risk of him doing something similar again was "non-existent".

"It was simply a mistaken act, a serious lapse of judgment and behaviour on Mr Brammer's part," he said.

Mr Dodgson said the 53-year-old had worked his way up from being a part-time cleaner with the ambulance service to being a "well-respected" paramedic over 12 years. He is now working as an agent for Frontline Paramedics.

Mr Dodgson said: "In essence, the job is his life, aside from his family. He has nothing else except that."

He said his client's marriage ran into problems "due to overworking" and he had suffered "numerous upsetting, emotional and heart-rending events" in his personal life, including the death of a six-week-old grandchild who stopped breathing at his home.

Brammer also helped his daughter overcome an addiction to heroin, Mr Dodgson said.

Brammer was now "throwing himself into his work" and was travelling the country with his job, spending long periods away from his wife, in an attempt "to help people".

Yesterday, security officers who saw a suspicious car in the car park said they focused a camera on the pair and saw the uniformed paramedic being given oral sex as he sat in the passenger seat shortly after 11pm on June 10 last year.

They described seeing what looked like "a performance of oral sex" as the woman's head moved up and down while in the man's lap.

Sharon Witton, who conducted the internal investigation for the ambulance trust, said Mr Brammer told her he had arranged to meet the woman once before and that he "had been having problems with his wife but they had decided to try again".

But she said he told her he was being pestered and stalked by the woman, who had been sending him text messages and calling him throughout his night shift, which ran from 6pm to 4am. She also threatened to come to the ambulance station at the hospital.

"So to stop that happening I agreed to see her in the car park," Mr Brammer told Ms Witton.

Describing events inside the car, he said the woman told him: "I'm going to show you what you're missing."

He went on: "She was intending to give me oral sex to leave my wife. I was embarrassed."

The panel also heard Mr Brammer changed his story.

He told a fact-finding hearing: "She was laid across my knee, moving her head up and down."

He added that she put her hand inside his trousers.

But he later told a disciplinary panel that she could not get her hand inside his trousers because he was heavier at the time and moved her head from side to side, not up and down.

The panel also went into closed session to discuss Mr Brammer's health and psychological issues after being told he was using the sedative temazepan at the time of his meetings with investigators.

A spokeswoman for Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust said: "In June 2008 we conducted an investigation into claims that an employee had committed a criminal offence and breached the trust's code of conduct.

"Appropriate disciplinary action was taken, resulting in the employee being dismissed from the trust and the case being referred to the HPC."

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