A former shop owner punched a pensioner in the face after he took offence at him parking outside his Cambridge home.
Iftikhar Ahmed, 56, saw red when the 88-year-old man parked outside his house in Victoria Road on December 30, while he collected a jacket from a tailors' shop.
After confronting the elderly man he hit him in the face, drawing blood and leaving him dazed and afraid.
Today (April 10) Ahmed appeared at Cambridge Magistrates Court, where he pleaded guilty to assault by beating.
The court heard a witness to the assault watched as the victim “parked up by the shop, collected his jacket, and saw a male standing there obviously annoyed about where he had parked his car, shouting this is private!”
They added: "The man was clearly angry.
“The next thing I knew, the man had come over to the car, reached on the door and in a raised voice shouted at him.
“Then he punched him in the face.”
The victim was so shaken by the attack he took shelter inside Rose's Tailor, where he was aided by staff.
The witness added: “He was in no condition to drive, so parked up and went back into the tailors shop.
“People in there were quite shocked to see him with his face bleeding, looking quite pale.”
'There had been some misunderstanding'
After police were called and questioned Ahmed he admitted the attack, and claimed he had misheard what the man had shouted to him.
His solicitor Mr Barnes said: “He was embarrassed about his behaviour, and has asked to convey his apologies for his appalling behaviour.
“There had been some issues with parking in the past. That is not an excuse, but it gives some background.
“He believed he had been told to eff off, when the victim had actually said: OK, I am off.
“There was some misunderstanding perhaps between parties, but that doesnt excuse punching someone.”
The court heard Ahmed, who has no previous convictions and has never been in trouble with the police before, recently sold his grocers shop in Regent Street, and was retraining as a plumbing and heating engineer.
He lives in Victoria Road with his wife of 32 years, and two adult children.
'Stressed and frustrated'
After discussing the case with him, a representative of the probation service told the court: “He expressed remorse for his actions, he couldnt explain why he did what he did.
“He was going through a lengthy process of selling his shop, and was feeling very stressed and frustrated.”
Ahmed was sentenced to 50 hours community service, and ordered to pay a total of £920 in costs and compensation, including £750 to the victim.
'Not up to you to take physical action'
Addressing Ahmed directly, magistrate Michael Sullivan said: “The victim was a man of 88-years-old, considerably older than yourself, something we have clearly taken into account on the sentence.
“You are 56-years-old, and until today you had a clean record and kept out of trouble. For this reason we believe the appropriate way forward in this case it to award a significant amount of compensation.”
He added: “I hope this particular experience proves that just because you believe someone is parking where they shouldnt park, it is not up to you to take physical action.”