Doctor recalls ‘urgency on the face of police’ at Fishmongers’ Hall attack

An emergency doctor called to the Fishmongers’ Hall attack described arriving at the scene to see “urgency on the face and in the voice” of armed police.

Dr Samy Sadek said he was confronted by “lots of noise … and lots and lots of blood” when he raced to London Bridge after convicted terrorist Usman Khan fatally stabbed Cambridge graduates Jack Merritt, 25, and Saskia Jones, 23, at a prisoner rehabilitation event on November 29 2019, while others were injured.

Jack Merritt and Saskia Jones

Giving evidence in the inquests at Guildhall in the City of London on Tuesday, Dr Sadek said he and his team also had to work on casualties despite rumours of a bomb.

Khan was later found to be wearing a fake suicide belt after being fatally shot by police.

Dr Sadek said: “We were attempting to establish whether there was an ongoing threat to us.

“No-one was able to tell us if there was one or more assailant.

“I was essentially told there was a bomb.”

Court artist sketch of Dr Samy Sadek in the Guildhall in London giving evidence Credit: PA/Elizabeth Cook

He also described the unfolding scale of the atrocity when he arrived at the scene and spoke to armed police.

He said: “(They) came towards us rapidly, they looked very distressed and asked us to come immediately into the scene.

“I also felt the urgency on the face and in the voice of the police officer, who was clearly very experienced, who told me we were required.”

Usman Khan Credit: Met Police

Describing the scene inside the hall, he said: “I could see numerous police officers, there was a lot of noise by way of shouting – there was lots and lots of blood.”

Dr Sadek said he then saw Ms Jones, lying prone at the foot of some stairs and receiving CPR, but felt she could not be saved.

He said: “My principle was always to do everything we can for every casualty there.

“It was to some degree unsafe and it was a difficult and volatile scene.”

Dr Sadek said that “tragically in Saskia’s case”, the combination of her having been stabbed in the neck, having bled extensively, and having been in a cardiac arrest for at least 15 minutes, “there was no intervention we were able to provide to save her life”.

Mr Merritt was also found with fatal injuries, despite attempts to restart his heart during emergency surgery.

Asked whether everything was done to save the pair, the consultant replied: “Absolutely everything was being done.”

The coroner, Mark Lucraft QC, told Dr Sadek: “Very difficult decisions have to be made in split seconds, but you and your team do a fantastic job.”

The inquests continue.