Guilty: Builders filmed beating up Hampstead traffic warden
- Credit: Archant
A traffic warden has told of his terror as a gang of builders punched and kicked him to the ground in a Hampstead street.
The brutal attack on the enforcement officer, who was floored moments after issuing a ticket to a van, was recorded by a passer-by on his phone.
Builders Shaun Ritchie, Kevin Lee Ritchie, and Loon Cuong Chu were found guilty of assault after Highbury Magistrates were shown footage of the attack and heard evidence from the witness.
Parking managers have revealed that the incident, in Agincourt Road, in September was one of five serious physical assaults on traffic wardens in Camden in the past year.
The warden, who is 45 and asked not to be named for his own safety, still suffers from blurred vision and had to be treated at the Royal Free Hospital for facial bruising and a head injury after the attack.
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The father-of-three, who has been a warden for three years, also had to take six weeks off work.
In the dramatic mobile phone footage, the burly men are seen running up to the warden and jumping on him before punching and kicking him.
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The enforcement officer, who is now back at work on his Hampstead patch, told the Ham & High: “I had issued a ticket to the van when one of the men started arguing and hit me on my chest. Then the other two arrived and joined in. They were kicking and punching me and one of them hit me on the head with my radio.”
He was knocked to the ground but managed to get up and press a panic button on the radio.
Police and ambulance were called by his controller and he was taken to the Royal Free Hospital.
Kevin Lee Ritchie, 36, the van driver, was given a three-month jail sentence, suspended for six months, and ordered to carry out 200 hours community service.
Shaun Ritchie, 28, and Loon Cuong Chu, 27, were ordered to do 180 hours of community labour each. The three must pay a total of £1,320 in compensation, costs and victim surcharges.
Paolo Orezzi, a manager at NSL, which employs 170 wardens on behalf of Camden Council, welcomed the conviction.
He said: “I hope this sends a strong message to motorists that this type of behaviour will not be tolerated.
“Our employees are just trying to do their job. I’m glad justice has been served.”