Road rage: ‘I should have been the bigger man’
A MAN who pleaded guilty to striking another motorist in a fit of road rage accused his victim of being the instigator, causing a headache for the magistrate hearing his case.
Peter Penny, who self-represented himself in the Southport Magistrates Court yesterday, pleaded guilty to assault occasioning bodily harm before giving his own version of events, which was at odds with police.
Magistrate Ron Kilner, after explaining that Penny's comments made it difficult for him to assess who was right or wrong in the matter, adjourned the case to a contested sentence hearing on March 10.
Penny had told the court he cut off the other driver on a Gold Coast bridge and apologised by putting his hand up.
But he accused the driver of being the "instigator" and said he was "going off his head".
"He just kept harassing me. Usually if you make a mistake in Sydney, you put your hand up and say I'm sorry," Penny said.
"He just kept going up the a--- of my car and then he cut me off."
Penny said he got out of the car and asked what the problem was.
"He said 'You're going to get hit'," Penny said.
"So I walked up to him and then he went to swing at me and that's when I hit him.
"At the end of the day I should have been the bigger man. I'll put my hand up for that."
But police prosecutor Lewis Butterfield argued Penny, who had a history of similar offending, should serve a period of jail and lose his licence for two years.
Magistrate Kilner said none of what Penny had raised was mentioned by police.
"Do you realise the seriousness of the situation you are in?" he asked Penny.
"Mr Penny, the police allege a certain set of facts. You've pleaded guilty and you are now raising to me significant mitigating factors, which aren't acknowledged by police.
"That puts me in a very difficult position, because I am in no position to make any assessment of who's right and who's wrong."