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Slap with bare hand shatters windshield in road rage attack

Tupufia Vaafusuaga charged with wilful damage. Photo: Rob Williams / The Queensland Times
Tupufia Vaafusuaga charged with wilful damage. Photo: Rob Williams / The Queensland Times Rob Williams

A ROAD rage incident escalated alarmingly when a 51-year-old man smashed a driver's windscreen with his bare hand.

Machine operator Tupufia Vaafusuaga had been a passenger in his friend's car, when the pair were apparently cut off in traffic.

When the two vehicles stopped next to each other at a traffic light intersection in Redbank Plains, both drivers made rude hand gestures at each another.

The exchange apparently provoked Vaafusuaga into getting out of his mate's Nissan X-Trail and attacking the other driver's vehicle.

At Ipswich Magistrates Court last week, the Samoan-born father of four pleaded guilty to one count of wilful damage.

Police prosecutor Sergeant Brad Dick said Vaafusuaga had walked towards the victim's Holden Statesman and pounded the car's windshield with the palm of his hand.

Sgt Dick said the impact of the strike caused the glass to shatter immediately.

After damaging the windshield, Vaafusuaga walked back to his friend's car and drove off with him.

A number of bystanders who witnessed the incident, provided police with the X-Trail's licence plate number, which led officers to finding Vaafusuaga.

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Vaafusuaga told police he had been angry with the other driver for cutting his friend off and then "giving him the finger".

He said he did not intend to smash the windshield when he slapped it.

Defence lawyer Amy Little said Vaafusuaga had a "limited" criminal history and was remorseful for his actions.

Ms Little said her client had made admissions and co-operated with police.

Magistrate Barry Cosgrove said the fact that Vaafusuaga didn't intend to cause the damage did not excuse his actions.

Vaafusuaga was fined $300 and ordered to pay a further $358 in restitution for the broken windshield.

Topics:  editors picks ipswich magistrates court road rage



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