Scots woman in court for damaging ambulance after England Cup win

A Scottish woman accused of smashing up an ambulance during celebrations for an England World Cup victory has appeared in court.

Thursday, 29th November 2018, 2:12 pm
Updated Thursday, 29th November 2018, 2:15 pm
Larissa Bell, 21 from East Kilbride, has appeared in a London court

Larissa Bell, 21, a waitress from East Kilbride, was allegedly pictured on top of the wrecked emergency vehicle in London after England beat Sweden 2-0 in the World Cup quarter-final ties in Russia on Saturday, 7 July.

Bell, wearing a black trouser suit, thick rimmed glasses and a necklace, appeared at Camberwell Magistrates’ Court in south London yesterday charged with criminal damage.

She was pictured being cheered on by noisy England supporters as she climbed on the emergency response vehicle outside of London’s Borough Market.

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The court heard a total of £6,867.42p damage was caused to the vehicle.

The ambulance had to be taken out of service for 34 days because of the damage.

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Bell was staying with friends in Orpington in south-east London at the time of the incident.

She appeared in the dock alongside Kangyue Jian, 27, of Poplar in east London, James Elton, 27, of West Hampstead in north-west London, and Scott Dennett, 25, of Thornton-Cleveleys in Lancashire, appeared charged with the same offence.

Bell and Dennett did not indicate pleas during the 15-minute hearing, while Elton and Jian both pleaded not guilty.

Prosecutor Dami Eniola said: “England had won the match that day and, as a result, thousands of people gathered outside to watch the match and support England.

“After the match the crowd started moving to Borough Market on to Southwark Street.”

She said during the celebrations police asked the driver of the ambulance car to park it in the road.

Miss Eniola said: “She looked around the area and she saw a member of the public stumble in front and he had a head wound and she went to provide him with medical assistance.

“During that time, the final whistle went for the game. Members of the public surrounded the vehicle.”

Miss Eniola added: “There were individuals jumping on top of it. This caused damage to the wing mirror of the ambulance.

“The bonnet was dented, the windshield was smashed, essentially it was dented.

“In total seven people were caught by social media footage to be seen on the vehicle on the car and the bonnet.”

The court was told some people from social media were not identified, but police arrested and questioned the four defendants.

Miss Eniola said: “The vehicle was severely damaged, it was out of service for 34 days.”

After the vehicle was forced out of service for repairs, ambulance bosses said the vandalism “put a dampener” on the cup celebrations.

But football fans rallied to raise cash for the repairs, with Millwall supporters alone pulling together £10,000.

A Skoda dealership also offered to repair the vehicle free-of-charge, so the money raised went instead towards restoring a historic ambulance.

Miss Eniola said the criminal damage charge has a starting point of 12 weeks in prison and all defendants were of “good character.”

Chair of the bench Finola Gowers bailed the four to appear at Inner London Crown Court in January.