Cyclist tells court of his fear after confrontation with driver in Portsmouth

Portsmouth Crown Court
Portsmouth Crown Court
Share this article

A CYCLIST has told of his fear after he was slapped and confronted by an allegedly dangerous driver.

Giving evidence at Portsmouth Crown Court, Ian Baskeen said he was left ‘frightened’ to get back on his bike weeks after a January encounter with Sebastian Baj on his way to work.

Baj, 33 of Estella Road, Buckland, is charged with dangerous driving and assault by beating. He denies the charges.

This afternoon, a jury was told Baj abruptly pulled out in front of Mr Baskeen at the roundabout linking Fawcett Road and Goldsmith Avenue in his Vauxhall Vectra, before proceeding to hit him on the back and confront him minutes later in Rodney Road.

Describing the incident on January 17 of this year, Mr Baskeen – who was accompanied by an intermediary to help him answer questions – said in court today: ‘It did not look like he [Baj] saw me. It made me brake and swear under my breath.

‘I went on past the Shell garage and took a left. That’s where he got out of his car right near the roundabout and hit me. Where I was moving, it was like someone patting my back. But it would have hurt more if I was not moving.

‘I was scared and I wanted to get away.’

Minutes later – after the pair continued moving up Fratton Way – Baj swerved on to the pavement near a car dealership in Rodney Road to confront Mr Baskeen.

The cyclist said: ‘He got out of his car and charged at me. I felt frightened and I thought I would hit his car with one of the bike locks on my handlebars as a warning. I know I should not have done it.’

The jury heard the pair then exchanged words by the side of the road and played a ‘tug of war’ over Mr Baskeen’s bike, before police arrived.

While he did not see Mr Baskeen get slapped, witness Gary Murphy pulled over after he saw Baj pull over in Rodney Road.

Giving evidence, he said: ‘He swerved straight on to the pavement – in front of the bike. The car gave no signal he was stopping. I heard a bang on the car – then there was then a tussle between the two of them over the pushbike.’