Ben Brough punched driver in 'road rage' attack in Lightwood
A TEENAGER who attacked a motorist after being involved in a road collision has been jailed.
Eighteen-year-old Ben Brough repeatedly punched Ryan Proctor after the incident on Sunday, July 8, North Staffordshire magistrates heard yesterday.
Prosecutor Andrew Bodger said Brough was driving a blue Citroen van in Lightwood when it caught the side panel of Mr Proctor's yellow Mercedes van.
Mr Proctor sounded his horn and Brough's van stopped about 60 metres down the road.
Brough said there was no real damage and when Mr Proctor asked for his details he said he was not giving them.
"Mr Proctor said he was calling the police," said Mr Bodger.
"As he turned to make a call he felt a blow to his face.
"He was then hit repeatedly to the face with both fists.
"Mr Proctor tried to run off but he was hit again on the head causing him to fall to the ground.
"Brough struck his left forearm and the left side of his ribs.
"Mr Proctor felt he was being kicked. He does not know if he was being kicked or not. He does accept it could have been a very, very hard punch.
"The driver, Brough, bent down and continued to punch him."
The court heard Mr Proctor was scared and in pain. He estimated the attack lasted between 30 seconds and a minute.
Brough got in his van and drove off.
Mr Proctor received treatment from an ambulance crew but did not need to go to hospital.
He was left with a swollen jaw, a bruised left forearm and swollen face.
He has had counselling and is still receiving treatment for psychological trauma.
Mr Proctor picked out Brough at an identity parade.
The defendant answered no comment to all questions in his police interview. But Brough, of Harlech Avenue, Lightwood, Longton, later pleaded guilty to assault.
The court heard the teenager's parents have paid Mr Proctor £200 for the damage to his van.
Kate Shufflebottom, mitigating, said Brough accepts assaulting Mr Proctor.
"He will say there was no kick involved but he does accept continuing to punch him while he was on the floor."
Miss Shufflebottom conceded the assault was sustained and the offence crossed the custody threshold.
But she asked magistrates to consider suspending any period of custody.
"He accepts he overreacted," said Miss Shufflebottom.
"But there was no justification for the way he managed the situation.
"It is not something he is proud of. He is very upset that he acted in this way."
But magistrates said immediate custody was warranted as the offence was aggravated by the ongoing effect on the victim, Brough has previous convictions for similar offences, and this assault was committed while he was subject to a court order.
They sentenced Brough to eight weeks detention in a young offenders' institution.