Two women who bashed two ambulance officers - potentially ending one paramedic's career - face at least six months in jail under laws designed to protect emergency services workers.
But lawyers for Amanda Warren and Caris??? Underwood, who attacked the paramedics in Reservoir after a day-long binge on bourbon, champagne and cannabis, told a magistrate their clients should be spared a mandatory jail term because their children would be worse off if their mothers went to prison.
Warren, 31, Underwood, 20, and a 15-year-old boy repeatedly kicked and punched Paul Judd and colleague Chenaye??? Bentley after they were called to help a drug-affected man about 6.15pm on March 31 last year.
The women saw the man and called triple zero, Melbourne Magistrates Court heard on Thursday, but took exception to being asked by the paramedics to let them attend to him, so Warren punched Mr Judd in the face.
Mr Judd, a paramedic for 40 years, suffered serious foot fractures that required three bouts of surgery and is yet to return to work, prosecutor Nick Batten said.
Mr Judd, wearing a moon boot, attended court with Ms Bentley and a handful of colleagues.
Ms Bentley was hit in the back of the head as she tried to drag the women off her colleague, and the attack left her terrified, shocked, angry and anxious.
"It made me angry that I had been assaulted while rendering care to the community," she said.
Ms Bentley said she regularly second-guessed patients and felt "survivor guilt" at being able to return to work where Mr Judd hadn't. His victim impact statement was not read to the court.
Prosecutors want magistrate Lance Martin to impose jail terms on Underwood and Warren under 2014 legislation that toughened penalties for assaults on emergency services workers.
Mr Batten said alcohol-fuelled violence deserved strong denunciation.
"It's totally incomprehensible to someone in the community why anyone would assault an ambulance officer. These are not authority figures. These are, as everybody knows, helping figures," Mr Batten said.
But defence lawyers said the women should be put on community corrections orders because of the impact prison would have on their children.
Sharon Lacy, for Underwood, said her client had turned her life around from drugs and alcohol in her teenage years to becoming a devoted mother to her six-month-old daughter.
Underwood had her son taken from her by authorities several years ago, Ms Lacy said, and it was not in the community's best interest to separate mother and daughter by imposing a jail term.
If Warren was jailed, defence counsel James Anderson said, her four children could not be adequately cared for by their father because his mental-health medication had sedative effects.
Mr Anderson said Warren's own borderline personality disorder meant her culpability was lessened because of her impaired mental functioning that day.
The women pleaded guilty to intentionally causing injury. Warren also pleaded guilty to criminal damage related to ramming her car into the ambulance after the assault, and handling stolen goods, because she took Mr Judd's gold necklace.
The boy, who cannot be named, faced a children's court and was ordered to spend eight months in youth detention. Mr Anderson asked the magistrate not to use the boy's sentence as a yardstick, as he had serious prior convictions.
Underwood was previously convicted of assaulting emergency services workers, when she threw a rubbish bin at police officers as a teenager.
Ambulance Victoria emergency operations group manager Huw Colechin said paramedics constantly faced the threat of being assaulted on the job.
"Violence against paramedics is unacceptable. Paramedics come to work to help members of the Vic community and they don't come to work to be assaulted," he said outside court.
Mr Martin will announce the sentence at a later date. The women are on bail.