A motorist who punched another driver in a rush hour road rage attack in Ahoghill has been ordered to pay the victim £250 compensation and also has to do 180 hours of unpaid work.
Lee Purdy (26), with an address at Brookfield Gardens in Ahoghill, appeared at Ballymena Magistrates Court on Thursday for sentencing in relation to assault which occurred at 8.40am on Friday February 22 this year.
A prosecutor said the injured party was driving towards Ballymena on the Galgorm Road in Ahoghill and he saw a Volkswagen Golf waiting to pull out of Trinity Mews and after a manoeuvre Purdy got out of the car and approached the other vehicle.
He punched the driver three or four times leaving the victim with a “sore jaw for a few days”.
Defence barrister Michael Smyth said Purdy thought he had time to pull out and believed the other driver then sped up to prevent him doing so.
The lawyer said because Purdy had his two-year-old son in the car he felt “aggrieved” and although he initially got out to go and speak to the other motorist he “allowed his temper to get the better of him” after feeling the other man was being “antagonistic”.
District Judge Nigel Broderick said the defendant had 28 previous convictions and as an alternative to sending him to prison he was ordering him to do Community Service.
The judge said it was a “very nasty” incident and added: “I take a dim view of any assault but road rage has a particularly aggravating element to it in my view”.