PHILIPSBURG--Jurickson Thomas (35) was found guilty on Thursday of hitting a man on the head with a pipe and damaging his property. For these crimes, he was given eighty hours of community service, forty of which were suspended, and two years’ probation.

Thomas approached a man at his workplace and assaulted him with a metal pipe on September 16. He was also charged with throwing stones at the other man and damaging the windows of one of his properties.

When questioned by the judge, Thomas admitted to assaulting the man. Some time before the incident, Thomas said, his car was stolen and he was told by persons in the community that the man he subsequently assaulted was the thief.

The man, a mechanic, had previously replaced a faulty radiator hose on Thomas’ vehicle.

Thomas said he had reported his suspicions to the police, who he claims told him they could not assist because the mechanic lived on the French side and they did not have jurisdiction.

Frustrated and angry, Thomas later confronted the man, assaulted him and destroyed his property.

The Prosecutor demanded 80 hours of community service for these crimes, of which 40 to be suspended, on two years’ probation. While he said he understood Thomas’ frustration, assaulting the man was “going too far.” He also said he would investigate what had become of Thomas’ police complaint.

The judge found Thomas guilty of assault and destruction of property. He said he understood a bigger conflict was going on and Thomas was angry because no resolution could be found via official channels. However, the judge said Thomas had taken the law into his own hands and that could not be condoned.

The judge agreed with the Prosecutor’s demands and sentenced Thomas to 80 hours of community service, half of which are suspended, on two years’ probation.