BBC presenter Jeremy Vine has claimed he feared for his safety after becoming embroiled in a road rage confrontation while cycling in Kensington .
The Radio 2 DJ was giving evidence against 22-year-old Shanique Syrena Pearson, who threatened to knock out Mr Vine in an abusive and foul mouthed rant as the pair clashed in the street, a court heard.
The presenter of Crimewatch and Eggheads also told the hearing the defendant made a gun gesture to him with her fingers as their row on Hornton Street continued, but Pearson denies using threatening and abusive or insulting words or behaviour and driving without reasonable consideration to other road users .
She claims Mr Vine was lying in a bid to racially stereotype her.
Mr Vine was giving evidence in a trial at Hammersmith Magistrates’ Court on Friday (January 13) following the incident which he captured on his helmet-cam as he cycled to work at BBC Broadcasting House from his home in Chiswick on August 26.
He later uploaded the video to his Facebook page where it was viewed by more than a million people. The court also heard it had received 15m views across the internet.
District judge Timothy King was shown the footage in which Pearson’s black Vauxhall Corsa is seen behind Mr Vine’s bike tooting her horn, before the BBC presenter stops in the road.
Pearson then gets out the car and is heard shouting: “Why the f*** would you stop in front of a car? You don’t respect your f****** life. Move your bike, move your bike.”
Mr Vine is heard defending his actions while Pearson, of Vauxhall, London, is seen kicking and pushing the bicycle.
As she gets back in her car she is heard saying: “If I hit you I could have been done for murder.”
Later in the clip, Mr Vine tries to take a picture of Pearson’s car while at a red light.
The driver is seen getting out of her vehicle again and says to Mr Vine: “I’m going to knock you out because that’s my personal belongings.”
The defendant is heard saying “don’t assault me” and “don’t hit me, that would be an assault” before Pearson gets back into her car.
Giving evidence, Mr Vine said he wanted to emolliate the driver before realising she was “a violent person, and said “I was quite scared about what was going to happen".
Discussing the confrontation at the red light and the words she used, he continued: “You hear in the footage she threatens to knock me out if I took her picture several times.
“Again I don’t want to make any judgements about her or who she is but they are the words of a violent person and somebody who had hit people before without any question.
"That is why it seemed threatening.”
Under cross examination James O’Keeffe, defending, said Mr Vine was seeking publicity and to promote his Facebook page, which the witness denied.
Discussing the gun sign, Mr O’Keeffe said: “I suggest to you that you have racially stereotyped her as a black person and that gesture is associated with black people.”
The presenter denied this too, adding: “I took that to be a serious threat.”
Pearson, who admitted to not having any tax on the car, said she thought there was enough space for Mr Vine to move over, and was “shocked” by the cyclist’s sudden stopping.
She said she got out to try and push and move the bike out the way, and says she got out a second time at the red light because she was “alarmed” Mr Vine had followed her and tried to take a picture of the car. She also admitted flicking him the finger.
'We both done wrong'
She admitted she could have handled the situation better, but said so could Mr Vine: “I know what I said was wrong and I’m open to apologise but we both done wrong.
“But you can’t be riding like that on the road. If I wasn’t as experienced I could have hit him.”
District judge King will deliver his verdict on January 26 at the City of London Magistrates Court .
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