Ballarat man allegedly swerves towards road traffic controller

A man accused of accelerating and almost running over a traffic controller on a road south of Ballarat is facing jail time, a court has been told.

Glen Sandwith, 43, appeared before the Ballarat Magistrates Court yesterday and pleaded guilty to a string of charges including dangerous driving following the incident in Linton on October 12 last year.

The court was told Sandwith was driving on Carngham-Linton Road when he saw the man re-directing traffic after a tree had been knocked down.

He allegedly revved his car and deliberately swerved towards the man who had to take evasive action before a stop sign he was holding was hit.

The man later told police he recognised the vehicle involved in the close shave, saying he thought Sandwith was behind the wheel.

"I really thought he was going to hit me and I was really scared ... it was definitely a deliberate act by the driver," he said.

The court also heard of an assault a month earlier in Ballarat where Sandwith headbutted another man while having a cigarette on the deck of a suburban house, causing bruising to the man’s forehead. 

Sandwith's defence lawyer said his client had been drinking 12 cans of bourbon a day at the time of the offending last year. 

The lawyer initially pushed for a non-custodial sentence to be imposed, saying his client had curbed his drinking and was successfully completing a community corrections order that had started before the two incidents last year.

But Magistrate Gregory Robinson rejected this, saying driving at the man and putting him in danger warranted a jail sentence if proven.

"It's effectively using a weapon to try and attack someone - a very dangerous one - and he almost succeeds with him hitting the stop sign that the gentleman was carrying," Mr Robinson said.

The court was told Sandwith and the man were known to each other prior to the incident.

However, Sandwith's lawyer said he initially thought the police brief stated there was no deliberate attempt to drive towards the man and that his client did not recall hitting the stop sign.

Magistrate Robinson said it appeared the facts were disputed in the case and agreed to adjourn the case until a contest mention.

“If it was a deliberate attempt to drive at someone I’m not going to entertain a CCO,” Mr Robinson said.

Sandwith will return to court on June 7.