Impatient driver drove his car at Edinburgh lollipop man

An angry motorist deliberately collided with a lollipop man with his car after was held up in traffic.

Wednesday, 15th September 2021, 3:47 pm

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John Clark, 50, shouted and swore at traffic operative John Sproul as the man helped primary school children cross the road at Ponton Street in Edinburgh last year.

Clark then inched his motor forward and struck Mr Sproul forcing him on the bonnet of his car.

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Impatient driver John Clark leaving Edinburgh Sheriff Court

Mr Sproul reported the incident to police and Clark appeared at Edinburgh Sheriff Cour where he admitted a charge of assault.

Fiscal depute Emma Laing told the court Mr Sproul was dressed in hi-vis clothing and was helping children cross the road near to Tollcross primary school in Edinburgh on September 7 last year.

Ms Laing said the crossing attendant “became aware of horn sounding” and believed it came from Clark’s black VW Golf which was waiting in the line of traffic.

The fiscal said: “He continued stopping traffic and at this point the black VW was at the front of the queue.

“The accused shouted out his window towards Sproul and said ‘Who are you? A f***ing lollipop man.’

“The accused Clark began revving his car and inching forward towards witness Sproul.

“Clark then shouted ‘If he doesn’t move I will run him over’ which was directed towards Sproul.

Ms Laing said the lollipop man was “lifted onto the car bonnet in a seated position” for about two meters before Clark stopped his car.

The pair then became involved in “a verbal disagreement” before Clark, of Little France, Edinburgh, drove away from the scene.

Mr Sproul then reported the incident to police two days later and Clark was arrested and charged the following month.

Defending lawyer Nigel Bruce said his client had been in the queue of traffic and had become “impatient” and that Clark was not the driver who had sounded his horn at the crossing attendant.

Mr Bruce said: “My client said something like ‘are you a lollipop man?’ and Mr Sproul replied no ‘I am a traffic management operative’.

He said Clark suffers from kidney disease and needs his driving licence to attend hospital three times a week for dialysis treatment.

Sheriff Adrian Fraser described the incident as an “unusual matter” and deferred sentence for reports and a restriction of liberty order assessment.

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