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A fine was not enough of a penalty for punching a parking warden, a judge told a Wairarapa tradesman in Masterton District Court on Tuesday.

Joshua Tamal Menzies, 21, admitted a charge of common assault after punching a Wellington City Council parking warden on March 23.

Judge Peter Hobbs said his response to the offence was one of “despair”.

“Not all jobs are popular, but that doesn’t mean you are entitled to assault them because you don’t like what they’ve done.”

Menzies said he was angry because he had only been parked “for one minute” before being issued the fine at 10am in Mount Cook, Wellington.

Menzies had followed and confronted the parking warden before punching them in the face, causing “swelling, bruising and tenderness to their left cheek”.

“None of us enjoy getting parking tickets, Mr Menzies, but they were just doing their job,” Judge Hobbs said.

“This person was doing their job, earning a living for their family, just like you are. That’s all this person is doing.

“Earning a living to put food on the table for his or her family.”

Judge Hobbs said restorative justice would have been appropriate, but “apparently the victim is not interested”.

Menzies’ lawyer Peter Stevens, said his client was willing to pay a fine, but Judge Hobbs replied there was “no chance that in my court he will be getting a fine for assaulting a parking warden”.

“There must be, in my view, a deterrent sentence to deter you and others from treating parking wardens this way.”

Judge Hobbs convicted Menzies and sentenced him to 80 hours of community work.