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Court told motorist 'pursued cyclist then ran him into tree'

Courier suffered lacerated liver and fractured ribs after protesting driver's use of mobile phone...

A cycle courier was left thinking he was ‘going to die’ after a female motorist chased him in her car and forced him to hit a tree, a court has heard.

Damien Doughty, 37, was started an argument with Justine Henshaw-Bryan, 24 when he spotted her using her phone behind the wheel in Stoke Newington, North London.

The court was told they exchanged ‘words and gestures’ before Henshaw-Bryan followed the cyclist in her black Ford Fiesta.

She hit his rear wheel and sent him forward into a tree, where he suffered a lacerated liver and fractured ribs.

He spent 14 days in intensive care following the incident, and was unable to ride his bike and earn any money.

Friends set up a crowdfunding appeal to pay his rent, which despite a target of £380, made over £3,000.

Sophie Staunton, prosecuting, told the court: “On February 10, the complainant was cycling and saw the defendant driving her car. She was holding her phone and not paying attention to the road.

“There was an exchange of words and gestures. The complainant admits he should not have followed and that he kicked her wing mirror.

“This made the defendant angry and she drove after him very closely.

“He turned left to get away from her. CCTV shows her following him and increasing speed.

“She collided with his rear tyre and he was thrown forwards into a tree.

“The complainant suffered internal injuries, including a damaged liver, fractured ribs and fractured fingers, which required surgery.'

The driver, who faces a charge of causing serious injury by dangerous driving, has been bailed to return to court on November 16.

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