A mother had a frightening experience when a man who had overtaken her slammed on brakes a number of times before finally getting out and punching in a side window, spraying glass on her.
Ryan Keating, aged 24, of 26 Oldcourt, Greenfields, Kilumney, Co Cork, admitted punching in a car window but claimed he had a legitimate grievance with her driving.
Judge Olann Kelleher said: “I do not accept for a second he had a proper grievance. He should have phoned the gardaí if he had a problem.”
Solicitor Frank Buttimer said Keating knocked on the driver’s side window but it smashed when he hit it with his fist. He said the young manpanicked and left the scene.
“It was a question of recklessness more than intent to damage it. He is prepared to pay compensation.”
The judge said: “It is too late. This happened in June 2013. Why should he not go to jail?”
Mr Buttimer said Keating had pleaded guilty to assault and causing criminal damage , and while i t was frightening for the woman motorist, she had not been physically assaulted. He accepted there was an assault in the sense that she had been put in fear.
Judge Kelleher said: “This was disgraceful behaviour towards a young lady.”
Keating received five months’ imprisonment, suspended for two years, and 200 hours of community service in lieu of four months’ jail for the offences near a round about at Kinsale Rd.
A dangerous driving charge was struck out due to the wrong location, on the summons, for the offence.
Judge Kelleher, dismissing the charge, told Sinead McCarthy, a mother of three, that he had accepted her evidence although the charge was struck out.
“This was an innocent lady going about her business. This man should be absolutely ashamed of himself,” the judge said.
Ms McCarthy told Inspector Pat Meaney that Keating pulled in sharply in front of her and a lorry when there was no space. He then slammed on the brakes several times, forcing her to brake. She later passed him and could see him mouthing ‘you are dead’, and running his finger across his throat, the court heard.
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