A Rhyl man who drove his van towards two brothers has been given a suspended jail sentence.
Jacob Webber (25) pleaded guilty to deliberately driving his vehicle towards Thomas and William Dunning in what was described by a judge as ”a classic case of road rage”. The van struck one of the men on Coast Road following a confrontation.
Mold Crown Court heard Webber’s blue Renault van had to brake to avoid hitting the brothers as they walked along Coast Road and turned into Maes-y-Don Drive.
He got out of his vehicle and threw a punch while confronting the men in an allegedly aggressive manner. Thomas Dunning, fearing he would be assaulted, punched Webber in the face and the driver stumbled back into his van before driving away.
The brothers later saw the van parked outside a house and tried to get the registration number so they could report the incident to police – but they saw Webber leave with another man said to be carrying a metal implement of some kind, and phoned their father while concerned there would be retribution.
Simon Dunning arrived at the scene and was shown where the defendant had gone. As Thomas Dunning moved closer to see the van’s registration number, Webber drove towards him and mounted the pavement. The van struck Mr Dunning on the bonnet and he was thrown over a wall into a garden.
William Dunning had to run out of the way of the van as Webber drove towards him while he was crossing the road. Thomas suffered only a gash to the knee and discomfort in the ribs and legs.
When interviewed by police, Webber denied driving at anyone and claimed he stopped because the brothers were trying to attack the van.
In court, the defence said it may take the view there was some provocation involved – but the barrister added the length of Webber’s driving ban would have an effect on his ability to work and support his family.
Sentencing Webber, Judge Nic Parry said he was out of control behind the wheel and the potential for harm was obvious. He had a poor criminal record but the judge accepted he did not look for trouble and he had kept out of trouble for seven years. He did not have any previous convictions for violence and the injuries caused were not serious.
Webber, who admitted dangerous driving and assault occasioning actual bodily harm, was given a 14 month jail sentence suspended for 18 months. He was also banned from driving for a year and told to take an extended driving test.
Webber must also pay £250 compensation to Thomas Dunning and a £140 surcharge and carry out 300 hours of unpaid work.
Source: Rhyl Journal