Road rage

ROAD rage assailant James Oates had been jailed for a "bullying attack" on another driver.District Judge David Cooper said he had no alternative but to jail the small business owner after hearing how he flew into a rage over a trivial road incident.

ROAD rage assailant James Oates has been jailed for a "bullying attack" on another driver.

District Judge David Cooper said he had no alternative but to jail the small business owner after hearing how he flew into a rage over a trivial road incident.

But Oates' solicitor John Hughes said he would appeal against the sentence after arguing for a community penalty to be imposed.

South East Suffolk Magistrates Court heard how Oates, 30, of Cauldwell Avenue, Ipswich, tried to punch another driver through a car sun roof after repeatedly kicking his car door.


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In previous hearings Oates had admitted criminal damage but denied common assault. He was convicted of the assault charge at trial.

Mr Hughes said his client had been badly advised on his guilty plea and still denied he had committed the assault.

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Patricia Doggitt, prosecuting, said the victim was driving his Volkswagen Golf along Colchester Road towards Sidegate Lane on April 25 when a convertible Ford Escort raced up to the rear of his car.

The Escort overtook the Golf into Sidegate Lane and pulled into a pub car park with the back of the car jutting out into the road.

Oates leapt from the Escort and repeatedly kicked the Golf before trying to punch his victim through the sun-roof.

Miss Doggitt said Oates may have been driving too fast and felt he had been cut off by the Golf driver.

Mr Hughes said he was unable to mitigate fully because of his client's intention to appeal.

He told District Judge Cooper Oates had launched a gas and electric supply advisory company last March, which now employs 10 people.

District Judge Cooper said the "bullying attack" left him with no alternative but to impose a 28 day jail term.

In criticising Oates' apparent lack of remorse he said: "You are in what social workers might refer to as complete denial."

And in jailing the defendant he said: "There has to be a deterrent so that other road users know they cannot get away with these sort of attacks."

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