Friend gives evidence in Dubai road rage case

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A friend of the British woman killed in an alleged road rage attack told a Dubai criminal court on Thursday of the moments before she was struck.

Katherine Wood died after she was allegedly hit by a white Hummer vehicle while out celebrating her birthday in Garhoud on May 30.

The driver, an Emirati man aged in his 20's, has been charged with the premeditated murder of Mrs Wood, the attempted murder of her husband and damaging public and private property. The accused has denied all charges.

The male friend told the court he was part of the group which arrived at the Aviation Club in a taxi, with the vehicle blocking the road.

The Emirati, 22, is alleged to have blown his horn and flashed the vehicle’s full beam lights at the taxi.

After an angry exchange between Emirati, the taxi driver and himself, the friend told the court he saw the Hummer mount the curb at drive at himself, and Wood’s husband.

“I jumped to the side…I yelled to Kate and Jeff (husband) to watch out, Kate fell to the left…into the gutter where the accused backed over her,” he said under oath.

The Hummer then drove off, he said. Mrs Wood is believed to have died in an ambulance en route to Rashid Hospital.

When asked why he thought the reason for the Hummer driver’s actions, the friend said: “He was enraged that we were blocking the road. We took too long to pay and get out of the taxi. That’s the only reason I can think of.”

A witness to the accident also gave evidence during the court session, saying he saw the Hummer hit the taxi passengers, and then reverse back over Mrs Wood.

The case has been adjourned until September 18.

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Posted by: Graham Plater

Thanks Ken - you get the point. Frank, I do not question the fact that it is the Court's privilege and duty to pass sentence on AA. Still, to claim that it is proper to assert that the victim was "allegedly hit" - in order to comply with standard reporting practice (and to avoid legal issues) - is to condone the sloppy use of English by the Press. I rest my case, and hope that AA gets what he deserves.

Posted by: Ken

I beleive the allegation in question is whether or not this man was the operator of the vehicle. As currently constructed it implies that the allegation is whether or not the women was killed by the vehicle.

Posted by: Frank

Graham, I think you answer your own question with the statement ?an allegation is a statement lacking proof.? This is the purpose of the court case, to prove that the suspect did in fact kill the lady. If the evidence is as overwhelming as reported then the verdict could be as expected. A court can not jump straight to sentencing just on the say-so of witnesses. There is always the burden of proof. Otherwise it turns into a kangaroo court. You then state that the court?s option does not include ?a verdict of not guilty.? I will treat that statement with the contempt it deserves. Whether the suspect killed the lady or not, is actually not the point here. The crux is the media?s responsibility in reporting these matters. Rather err on the side of caution and include the word ?allegedly?, than open yourself up to possible future litigation. As in any country governed by law, the accused has rights, like pleading not guilty. And these rights must be respected by all involved, which includes the media.

Posted by: Samer

An example must be made of the reckless Hummer driver. Road rage is something that the government should NOT go easy on. Road rage causes the same -if not more- deaths as traffic accidents here in the UAE. May the woman's soul rest in peace.

Posted by: paul.

The 22 year old emirati should be jailed, named and shamed, the local youth have no respect for anything due to having everything given to them by their elders, he needs to be made an example of, IF they find him guilty.

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