Two hospital porters at Bradford Royal Infirmary squared up to each other in a fall out over a food break, a court heard.
The “humdinger” of a row ended when father-of-two Dennis Obasogie butted Matthew Jones because he thought the complainant was going to hit him.
Obasogie, 29, of Raikes Avenue, Holme Wood, Bradford, was yesterday given a 12-month community order, and ordered to carry out 200 hours of unpaid work, after admitting common assault.
Prosecutor Sarah Collett told Bradford and Keighley Magistrates’ Court that on May 8 last year the two men were on duty at BRI when a dispute arose between them about the need for Obasogie to have time for some food because of a medical condition.
Mrs Collett said: “The argument developed into a nasty and potentially confrontational situation.
“At one point the complainant put up his hands to the defendant. Believing he was about to hit him he acted instinctively and thrust his head quickly towards the complainant’s head, causing an injury.”
In mitigation, Obasogie’s solicitor, Reg Le Pla, said his client and the complainant had been work colleagues for a month to five weeks.
Mr Le Pla said the defendant had difficulty fulfilling some of his obligations without a much earlier break for food than normal and his colleague had “certain beliefs” about it.
“It could be said this matter came to a head, and it was a real humdinger of a row,” Mr Le Pla said.
He added that they were squaring up to each other and if there had been further confrontation it would have caused alarm to those watching and those who believed the “good order of the hospital was being disfigured.”
“My client did believe the complainant was about to hit him and reacted wrongly.”
The court heard Obasogie was remorseful and understood the impact on himself and others.
He was no longer working for the NHS, but was doing agency work and was looking to get a HGV licence.
Obasogie was ordered to pay £200 prosecution costs and a £60 victim surcharge, at a rate of £10 a week.