A man described by a police prosecutor as a "coward" has been jailed for a series of crimes including a terrifying road rage version of "dodgem cars".
The victim of Joshua Petrie's recent driving told of his life "flashing before my eyes" as his car was repeatedly rammed last month in a high-speed incident on Melbourne's Western Ring Road.
The driver told the Melbourne Magistrates Court on Wednesday that an angry Petrie looked "crazy like he was going to kill me".
Prosecutor Sergeant Geoff Adams quoted the man's victim impact statement, in which the man said he was "shitting myself" at Petrie's conduct, with Petrie's car "right up my arse" after 8am on January 13 in Sunshine.
Sergeant Adams said Petrie, 23, had sped to catch up with the man and as they each travelled at 100km/h he rammed the rear of the victim's car about four times and continued to do so after they slowed.
He told the court that when the victim sped up to try to escape, Petrie again rammed his car, spinning it several times - and narrowly avoiding a concrete dividing barrier - before Petrie fled the scene.
The victim wrote that the event "felt like it was dodgem cars".
About an hour later, Petrie was subdued and arrested by police after he crashed and wrecked the car while "enraged" during an argument with his girlfriend in Spencer Street.
When Petrie appeared in custody on Wednesday, he pleaded guilty to charges from the driving incident and to others, that included assaulting police, weapons offences and driving matters, from April and August last year.
Petrie, who lives in Footscray, works in his father's factory making brushes.
Sergeant Adams said Petrie had unexpectedly punched a policeman to the face outside a South Melbourne nightclub in April and four months later he was found in possession of a shortened shotgun and a hunting knife after another altercation with police at a motorcycle clubhouse.
Defence lawyer Charlie Nikakis said his client had been significantly affected by alcohol outside the nightclub, while the later incident occurred in a confined area after he had let police into the premises without resistance.
Mr Nikakis told the court that Petrie was not the owner of the weapons.
He was prohibited from possessing them after earlier being sentenced to a prison term for an assault matter.
Mr Nikakis said he did want to be critical of the victim in the driving incident, but he noted he had shaken a "weapon" at Petrie, while Mr Nikakis conceded his client had "behavioural problems" associated with anger, but not drugs or alcohol.
He noted it was Petrie's first time in custody and he was "still at a fairly young age".
In his sentencing submissions, Sergeant Adams told magistrate Franz Holzer that Petrie was a "coward" for his assault on the police officer who was doing his duty without hostility as part of any officer's role in protecting people's lives, safety and property.
He noted that the victim of Petrie's driving had grabbed a wheel wrench in the hope it would scare him.
Mr Holzer jailed Petrie for three months, less time served on remand, and put him on a community corrections order for two years with conditions that included he do 200 hours of unpaid community work and undergo treatment or assessment for drug, alcohol and anger issues.