'Arrogant' driver who parked outside school gates assaulted mother who stood in his way

(Solent Pictures)
Lee Rowe was convicted of assault. (Solent Pictures)

An "arrogant" parent who pushed a mother in a parking row on the school run has been convicted of assault.

Lee Rowe, 52, regularly parked his Range Rover outside the front gates of his child's infant school, often to the annoyance of other parents.

On the morning of 20 May 2021, he pulled into his usual spot to find mother Sarah Collins standing in the way so he beeped his horn at her.

Collins was aware of Rowe's history of "inconsiderate parking" and refused to move for him.

A court heard she shook her head and mouthed the word "No" at him.

Businessman Rowe pulled up next to her, angrily got out and used two hands to shove her out of the way in front of other parents.

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(Solent Pictures)
Diane Worboys witnessed the incident. (Solent Pictures)

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Collins was "very shocked" by the 9am altercation and was hurried into the headteacher's office where the police were called.

She described having an ache in her arm from where she was shoved and complained of Rowe's history of inconsiderate parking near the school.

Collins, who is aged in her 40s, said: "I was looking back up towards the school, my back was to the road.

"When I heard a horn beeping I turned around and saw Mr Rowe gesturing at me with two hands to move.

"I shook my head and turned back to look at the school.

"I was very shocked when he moved the car further forwards and the next thing I knew the man got out of the car and shoved me out of the way.

She added: "I had observed Mr Rowe's driving before this incident and I had thought that he didn't think of others when parking just outside the school."

Diane Worboys, a teaching assistant at the school, witnessed the incident.

(Solent Pictures)
Lee Rowe admitted his parking had been arrogant. (Solent Pictures)

She described Rowe as "visibly angry" and "aggressively shoved" Collins.

Rowe, from Poole, denied the allegation of assault. He admitted that he '"arrogantly" parked in his usual space on the street but did not touch Collins.

He said: "I never laid a hand on that woman, I've never laid a hand on any woman.

"For the last two years, I wished I parked somewhere differently.

"I guess it was arrogant that I decided I would park there even though she was close to the pavement."

When questioned by James Moor, defending, Collins denied she wanted to have a confrontation with Rowe.

Charles Nightingale, prosecuting said the incident was witnessed by two parents and Worboys. He said it was unlikely that the four witnesses would have come together to "fabricate" a story.

Presiding magistrate Leonard Vickery found Rowe guilty of assault following a trial at Poole Magistrates' Court.

Rowe was sentenced to an 18-month conditional discharge and was ordered to pay £200 court costs and a £22 victim surcharge.