A LANDSCAPE gardener who rammed a woman’s car in a road rage attack after tomato sauce was squirted at her is behind bars.

Richard Collins, 38, of Bettws, Newport, also punched the window of Ellie Campbell’s Seat Ibiza after subjecting her to a “terrifying” ordeal.

The city’s crown court heard how the defendant has a long criminal record with 39 previous convictions for 97 offences.

Nik Strobl, prosecuting, said the incident started on the city’s Red Brick Lane and ended on Caerleon Road.


Miss Campbell was driving with a woman passenger when she was confronted at a roundabout by Collins who had two men with him in his pickup van.

Mr Strobl told Newport Crown Court: “Those in the van threw tomato sauce over her car and she pulled over, believing the sauce would get through the open window.”

He said Collins then drove into the side of her Seat in a “deliberate action”.

Mr Strobl added: “She then followed the pickup truck to get the registration. The defendant stopped and he and the two others exited their vehicle. He approached the car and there was an altercation.

“The defendant punched the windscreen, causing damage to the windscreen.”

The court heard how, as the van left the scene, Miss Campbell was told, “That’s what you get for being chopsy!”

Collins entered late guilty pleas on the day of his trial after he admitted dangerous driving and criminal damage.

The offences occurred on June 21, 2018.


The court heard how Collins had served custodial terms before and his previous convictions include assault, criminal damage and driving offences.

Harry Baker, mitigating, said: “The defendant is a landscape gardener with a partner and two small children who are reliant on him.

“This was a head in the sand plea. He still works and employs people. His behaviour was a loss of temper.”

His barrister said Collins had referred himself to the Gwent Drug and Alcohol Service because he has “some problems”.

Judge Neil Bidder QC told the defendant: “This was deliberate and aggressive driving. This was an incident that is known colloquially as road rage.

“You were upset with the driving of another road user and your actions were characteristic of your very bad record of offending.

“You are an aggressive man. You deliberately collided with another motor vehicle because you didn’t like the driving of that person and that person was a woman.

“She was extremely upset and frightened – and no wonder.

“You then got out and punched her windscreen. It was intolerable behaviour and absolutely terrifying for her.”

The judge added that these offences were a “great pity” and told Collins: “You are self-employed, you employ others, you have decent work and a partner and young children.”

But he told him he had to impose an immediate prison sentence.

Collins was jailed for 46 weeks and banned from driving for one year and 23 weeks.

He will have to pay a £140 victim surcharge upon his release from custody.