A courier who "just flipped" after his bicycle was sideswiped by a motorist last April was sentenced to a minimum of 30 months in prison yesterday for throwing a brick through the car's window and injuring the 22-month-old toddler inside.

The child, the son of the driver, was hit on the left side of the face and needed 20 stitches, according to court statements.

"You may have had some quarrel with the fellow who sideswiped your bike, but that doesn't give you any right to take it out on an innocent baby," said D.C. Superior Court Judge Stephen F. Eilperin, who handed down the sentence of 30 months to 90 months. "It's totally outrageous."

Anthony Fox, 21, had pled guilty earlier to the charge of assault with a deadly weapon. In asking the court yesterday for probation rather than a prison sentence, he said he had not meant to hurt the baby but had acted in the heat of an argument with the child's father.

"I was just really angry at being run off the road," Fox said.

But Eilperin, citing previous troubles Fox had had with the law, including a 1982 assault conviction for attacking a man he suspected of stealing his moped, said Fox had not learned to control his temper.

The brick-throwing incident occurred last April in the 100 block of S Street NW, according to a police report. The driver of the car, Kenneth Reynolds, complained Fox was riding his bicycle in an erratic manner when the accident occurred.

A subsequent fight between Fox and Reynolds drew a crowd, according to Barbara VanGelder, assistant U.S. attorney. She said Fox threw the brick through the rear window of the car, ignoring warnings from the crowd that a baby was strapped into a carseat in the back. Several witnesses reported hearing Fox threaten the baby, and VanGelder said some bystanders attacked Fox after the incident.

Fox's attorney Leonard Long said, and VanGelder agreed, that Fox "just flipped" during the altercation with Reynolds.

"I really think he didn't see the baby," Long said. "It was just that his bike was destroyed and that was his livelihood."