Man who lent car to employee smashed it up because he had not been paid for it

Magistrates have heard that when a former employee failed to return or pay for the car he had been lent, his ex-employer 'took action into his own hands' and smashed it up with a sledge hammer.

Boston Magistrates Court
Boston Magistrates Court

Magistrates have heard that when a former employee failed to return or pay for the car he had been lent, his ex-employer 'took action into his own hands' and smashed it up with a sledge hammer.

Thomas Stevenson-Joyce, 26, of Manor Farm, Hogsthorpe, who admitted causing damage to the windscreen and driver's door window of the Audi A3 car, was said to have lent the car to an employee, Thomas Sharp, to enable him to get to work.

Andy Convoy, prosecuting, said Stevenson-Joyce let Mr Sharp go as his work was 'not up to standard', but allowed him to keep the car for an additional week after he was dismissed.

He said that at 7.15pm on September 26, police were near Mr Sharp's address on an unrelated matter, when they were told and then saw Stevenson-Joyce smashing the car up with a sledgehammer.

He said the officers were told by Mr Sharp that his former employer had said he could buy the car and pay him £250 a week until £1,000 was paid, however Stevenson-Joyce said the car still belonged to him.

He told police he 'wanted to make the car inoperable' so Mr Sharp couldn't use it.

The court was told that Stevenson-Joyce would still commit an offence if he damaged his own property which was under the control of somebody else.

Mitigating, David Eager said title to the car would not transfer to Mr Sharp until any final payment was made but that Stevenson-Joyce 'took action into his own hands which he bitterly regrets'.

He said he had only gone there to recover his vehicle and that 'it would be a shame if his character was ruined in the long term for damaging what was his own vehicle'.

He was given an absolute discharge but was ordered to pay court costs of £85.