A MAN punched a 66-year-old parking warden after he asked for a car to be moved from a loading bay in Oxford’s Cowley Road.

Lancelot Maine dashed across the busy East Oxford street to attack Isidoro Nahabwe.

Maine was yesterday given a suspended prison sentence for the attack last year.

Judge Julian Hall told him: “Many of us get frustrated with parking wardens, but I don’t think I’ve come across a case where someone has hit them.”

Mr Nahabwe was struck twice and knocked to the ground.

He suffered a dislocated left shoulder in the attack and his face was badly bruised. He was off work for three weeks.

Maine, 24, had admitted a charge of causing grievous bodily harm at an earlier hearing and appeared at Oxford Crown Court to be sentenced yesterday.

Clare Tucker, prosecuting, said: “Mr Nahabwe is the complainant, a parking attendant aged 66. He was working in that role in Cowley Road at approximately 10am on September 13.

“He saw a car parked in the loading bay near the NatWest bank and went over to it. He saw a young woman in the passenger seat – the defendant’s partner – and asked if she could move the car.”

Miss Tucker said the woman was moving across to the driver’s seat when Maine returned and made a comment to Mr Nahabwe, before driving off towards East Avenue and parking the car.

She said: “He tried to beckon the complainant over to where he was, but he (Mr Nahabwe) didn’t go over to him.

“The defendant drove past him with his window down at a slow speed and shouted something at him.

“The defendant drove down Bullingdon Road and the complainant wrote his registration down.”

Mr Nahabwe took a photograph of Maine’s Ford Focus as it passed.

Miss Tucker said: “He was standing doing that when he felt a blow to his head. He saw the defendant. He was then hit again.

“This was very painful. He fell to the pavement and couldn’t break his fall at all and landed on his left shoulder. He tried to get up but couldn’t use his left arm due to the pain.”

Maine, a delivery driver for DHL, ran off as passers-by came to the warden’s aid.

Maine, of Wytham Street, New Hinksey, was arrested two weeks later.

He told police he feared he was going to be hit by Mr Nahabwe, so punched him twice in a pre-emptive strike.

Judge Hall dismissed this explanation.

John Upton, defending, said: “At the outset may I say my client has deep, deep remorse for his actions.

“They were wholly out of character and have had significant impact on him and his family, and he’s fully aware of the impact it would have had on the complainant.”

Maine was given a four-month prison sentence, suspended for a year, and ordered to do 100 hours’ community work and pay Mr Nahabwe £1,000 compensation.

Judge Hall said that the sentence “sends a message that public servants should be protected”.