A man's frustration with the amount of time his partner took shopping ended with him on the roof of her car as she drove through central Dunedin, a court has heard.
Leon Desmond Solomon (28), of Oamaru, appeared before the Dunedin District Court yesterday after pleading guilty to two counts of assault in a family relationship and one of wilful damage.
Counsel Sarah Saunderson-Warner said her client suffered anxiety as a result of traumas from his past.
On December 8 last year, that condition was untreated.
While Solomon's partner and three children shopped in Dunedin's Meridian mall, he sat in the car park while his anger boiled over.
The defendant walked into the shopping centre and dragged the woman up the escalator as the children followed.
Once in the car, he back-hand slapped the victim in the face and told her he should knock her out.
The fact the offence happened while the woman was driving made her particularly vulnerable, Judge Phillips said, and it was further aggravated by the presence of the children.
As the family continued down Princes St, near the casino, Solomon hit the victim again.
The woman slammed on the brakes and he got out.
However, when she drove off, Solomon clambered atop the vehicle and his arrest occurred shortly afterwards.
Three days later, when discussing the incident back home in Oamaru, the defendant punched a hole in the wall.
He had since paid for the damage, the court heard.
As a result of the violence, the victim had moved to Christchurch with the children while Solomon lived with his parents.
However, at a restorative justice conference, the man apologised and they agreed to reunite some time in future.
The woman wrote a message to her partner in a statement to the court.
"Leon, you need to own this and make a change for the better. I don't want to throw away our relationship and I think we can be better," she said.
Solomon was sentenced to two months' community detention and nine months' supervision.