Trial hears how driver mowed down Axminster pub customer who spat towards car

Exeter Crown Court. Picture: Archant

Exeter Crown Court. Picture: Archant - Credit: Archant

A young driver mowed down a pub customer who went into the street to remonstrate with him about him speeding in a town centre, a court has heard.

Connor Lee, 19, allegedly used his red Hyundai car as a weapon when he ran over Stuart Dixon outside the Red Lion pub in Lyme Road, Axminster, in May.

He drove off at speed leaving Mr Dixon with a shattered right leg, a dislocated left ankle, and a tyre mark across his trousers, Exeter Crown Court heard on Tuesday, October 22.

Lee had three friends in the car when he drove past the pub at 7.40pm on May 11, while Mr Dixon was standing on the pavement having a cigarette.

The prosecution said he thought the car was driving too fast and tried to spit at it as it went past him.

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The jury heard Lee travelled up the road a short distance, turned round, and pulled up outside the pub again.

CCTV showed Mr Dixon going around the car towards the driver's window and being knocked down as it pulled away.

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The car then reversed and drove off at speed, avoiding the prone figure of Mr Dixon in the road.

Lee, of Wellesley Road, Charmouth, denies causing grievous bodily harm with intent.

The jury has been told he admits the less serious charge of causing grievous bodily harm.

Richard Crabb, prosecuting, said Lee could be seen deliberately turning the wheel of his car so as to hit Mr Dixon as he pulled away from outside the pub.

Mr Crabb said it was clear that he intended to hit him and it should have been obvious that he would suffer serious injury if he was run over by the car.

Friends went to Mr Dixon's aid and he was taken to hospital with a serious fracture of the lower right leg and dislocation of the left. He spent three weeks in hospital, is still on crutches and has been unable to resume work.

Mr Dixon, who is in his 50s, said he had been watching the European Rugby Cup final at the pub with friends and went out for a cigarette on the pavement outside after the final whistle.

He said he saw a red car speeding past and spat at it because he lives nearby and is fed up with drivers going too fast in the area.

He saw the car turn round and said he went back into the pub to warn others there could be trouble.

He said he spoke to the driver through the passenger window and was going round the front of the car when he was hit.

He said: "It gets a bit blurry at this point. It was a very short conversation. I thought I got all the way to the driver's window. I don't remember being hit but I remember lying in the road."

Fellow customer Roger Summers said he saw the car hit Mr Dixon and heard the driver say 'I'm going to do him' to his passengers immediately before the collision.

He told the court he saw the car go over Mr Dixon's legs and then speed away.

Another customer, Robert Murley, said he saw tyre marks in the road and on Mr Dixon's trousers after he was run over.

The trial continues.

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