‘Road rage’ driver who threatened female motorist told to take anger management course

A driver who shouted and swore at a lone female motorist has avoided being sent to prison – but has been ordered to complete an anger management course as part of his sentence.

Peter Abbott, 60, was convicted of using threatening abusive or insulting words or behavior against Samantha Isaacs during the incident outside a Tesco petrol station in Bournemouth, Dorset, on 25 August last year.

After the trial at Poole Magistrates’ Court, the judge sentenced him to a 12-week prison sentence suspended for 18 months and disqualified him from driving for 18 months.

He was also ordered to carry out 20 rehabilitation days, to complete an anger management course and pay £300 compensation to Ms Isaacs and £300 court costs.

Sentencing Abbott, District Judge Orla Austin said: “Ms Isaacs was a lone female in her car, this was a sustained incident, your level of anger and aggression was extremely high, the language you used was extremely offensive and you put her in significant fear with an ongoing effect on her life.

“Bystanders intervened, such was the level of your aggression.”

In a victim impact statement read to the court, Ms Isaacs said: “I don’t trust any motorist now, I feel my confidence in driving has taken a huge knock.

“I am now turning away work that is further afield. I keep my doors always locked, I never drive unless I really must, I am so angry the man has taken my job pleasure away from me, I am angry that I am scared all the time when I drive.”

Abbott told the court that he accepted he needed to seek anger management counseling as he had become “isolated” in recent years.

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The court heard that a personal reference for Abbott from a friend described him as “a peaceful, introverted and bookish person.”

He said: “I have been isolated for quite a long time, this is mainly due to the nature of my work, I am a translator, I spend days and weeks holed up in my apartment in front of the computer.

“So progressively over the 12 years I have been back in the UK I have noticed my relationships with people have diminished to the point where I didn’t have any contact with friends or family.”

He added: “I have always expressed regret and remorse for my part in the incident and fully hold my hands up to that and realize it was wrong and I am prepared to accept the consequences of that behavior.”