Judd linked to 'assault'

HANNAH FLEMING
Last updated 12:04 14/11/2012
judd stand
FAIRFAX NZ
New Plymouth District Councillor Andrew Judd, who has admitted being involved in an altercation with clamper Daniel Clout.

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LATEST: One of the men being investigated over an alleged assault on clamper Daniel Clout is New Plymouth district councillor Andrew Judd.

Mr Judd has told the Taranaki Daily News he acted in self-defence during an altercation which took place in a private car park next to his optician business on King St.

The scuffle happened about 11.45am yesterday after Mr Clout clamped a Judd Opticians customer who had parked in the private car park.

Mr Clout said he was approached by two men, including Mr Judd, who ''got right up into my face and were trying to intimidate me''.

He said he was forced up against a brick wall by the throat, and then shoved and hit in the face.

Mr Clout said his video camera was also broken during the incident.

But Mr Judd said the clamper had been monitoring the area from one of the six parks privately owned by him, which he has forbidden Mr Clout from doing.

Mr Judd claimed he told Mr Clout he would have him clamped, to which Mr Clout replied ''try it'', followed by a flurry of offensive language.

He then advanced at Mr Judd and his business associate with one of his clamps, which Mr Judd described as scary and intimidating.

''It was more just shoving and yelling and swearing,'' Mr Judd said.

''In the heat of debate, things sometimes get out of hand. Given the tension and the circumstances I think I acted appropriately as any other person would.''

Mr Judd said it was not the fact he had clamped the customer that agitated him, but that he had been parked in one of his private parks while preying on others.

''In this case he was right, and I'm not saying he wasn't. I don't want to stop him doing his job.

''But he's not supposed to be in my car park, looking to clamp others.''

Mr Clout said he expected both men to be charged for threatening behaviour and assault.

Senior Sergeant Thomas McIntyre said police were now investigating and asked members of the public who may have witnessed the altercation to contact Senior Constable Toni Haggart at the New Plymouth Police Station.

Mr Judd said following police investigations, if he was found to have done anything wrong, he would do the honourable thing and step down from his duties as a councillor.

Mr Clout has been in the spotlight this week for clamping an unmarked police car which was parked in a private car park on Monday afternoon.

He was also recently found guilty of assaulting a German tourist whose van he had clamped.Police are investigating an alleged assault on New Plymouth clamper Daniel Clout.

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