Violence erupted between two neighbours when a row over a parking place got out of hand, a court heard.
Gary Vint got angry when Deane Davis parked across his driveway at the rear of his house in Armadale, West Lothian, and refused to move his car.
Mr Davis in turn accused Vint of scratching his family car and – when Vint crouched down to examine the alleged damage – kicked him in the chest.
What happened next landed Vint in the dock at Livingston Sheriff Court accused of assault to severe injury and permanent disfigurement and facing a possible prison sentence.
However, the Crown accepted a guilty plea to a much reduced charge of assault to injury and he ended up being ordered to carry out 225 hours of unpaid work under a community payback order.
Vint, 43, admitted retaliating by repeatedly punching Mr Davis on the head during the incident behind the accused’s home in Mayfield Drive, Armadale, on December 14, 2015.
Fiona Nairn, prosecuting, said Mr Davis had gone to get his jacket out of the family car and saw Vint and another man standing near the vehicle.
She said: “The accused asked Mr Davis what he was doing and why the vehicle had been parked over his property in front of his driveway. Mr Davis in response confirmed to the accused he’d move his vehicle in time.
“Mr Davis, who was now within the vehicle, saw the accused walk towards him in what’s described as an angry manner.
“Mr Davis, who at this time was lying across the driver’s seat reaching into the passenger side, had kicked out to prevent the accused coming any closer.
“The accused thereafter reached into the vehicle and began punching the complainer to the head through the driver’s side of the vehicle.
“Mr Davis has attempted to climb over to the passenger side to evade the accused. The assault stopped and the accused returned to his property.”
She said Vint had told police that he’d been “having issues” with Mr Davis and his partner for some time.
“He stated they were always arguing and shouting at each other and anyone else out in the street and they repeatedly parked their car across his driveway.”
Mr Davis was treated at St John’s Hospital in Livingston for multiple abrasions to his face, a small area of tissue loss and swelling and tenderness to the right side of his head. He also complained of numbness below his right eye and had a cut to the right of his nose.
Alan Jackson, defending, said his client had retaliated after Mr Davis had kicked him on the chest.
He told the court: “This was a one-off of its kind – a reaction. He’s not a man generally who rises to confrontation, as shown by his record.”
Passing sentence, Sheriff Douglas Kinloch told Vint: “Tempers flaring over a parking issue and someone ends up injured. Had you been convicted of the original charge then you would be facing a prison sentence.”