A MAN threatened to take a hammer to his neighbour’s car in a dispute over a car parking space, a court heard.

Shaun Benzie, 47, of Ewan Close, Barrow, pleaded guilty at South Cumbria Magistrates’ Court to using threatening behaviour to cause harassment, alarm and distress, and threatening to damage and destroy his neighbour’s property.

The court heard the incident occurred on May 6 and involved a row between Benzie and his neighbour Layla Sloan.

Prosecutor Pam Ward told the court: “There was a dispute between the defendant and his neighbour about a parking space.

“His neighbour is a fairly new resident to the area."

The court heard Benzie was swearing in an aggressive manner during the altercation because his neighbour had parked her car in a spot which Benzie had used for many years.

Ms Ward read out a statement in court from the witness which said: “I remember he said: ‘I have lived here for eight years and I will take a hammer to your car’.

Ms Ward said Benzie swore at the victim aggressively on several occasions.

The court also heard how the victim filmed the incident on her mobile phone and that she wanted a restraining order placed on Benzie.

Defence solicitor Trystan Roberts told the court: “It is commonplace for people to dispute over parking spots.

“However, Mr Benzie has kidney disease and suffers from mental health issues, which could have affected his judgement and behaviour.

“He accepts he went over the top.

“I have seen the footage of the incident and Mr Benzie does walk back into his home as soon as she starts recording him.

“He does not repeat any of his actions and fully accepts his behaviour was not acceptable.

“There has been no problems since the incident on May 6.

“He has said ‘I will not do it again’.”

The bench took into account the fact Benzie pleaded guilty to both charges and sentenced him to pay a £180 fine.

He was also ordered to pay £85 prosecution costs and a £30 victim surcharge.

The bench dismissed the request by Benzie’s victim to place a restraining order stating ‘it would be disproportionate to his sentence’.

Due to Benzie being unemployed, the bench will be deducting the fine, prosecution costs and victim surcharge from his benefits.