Daughter's fear in alleged road rage
An 18-year-old woman has given evidence as a prosecution witness against her investment banker father accused of running over a man in an alleged road-rage incident.
She became upset, and the court briefly adjourned, when her court evidence was shown to be significantly different to that she gave police at the time.
Prominent Forsyth Barr investment banker Guy Hallwright is on trial before a jury at Auckland District Court charged with causing grievous bodily harm to Song-jin Kim in September 2010.
He has pleaded not guilty.
Hallwright was in his car with his daughter, Isabel Hallwright who was today called by the prosecution.
"My father drove forward and after what seemed a pretty long time there was a small bump while we were driving," she told the court.
She said that she did not believe at the time they had hit Kim.
But Crown prosecutor Ross Burns put to her the police statement she made at the time, in which she said she knew they had hit Kim.
After her father drove off she could hear "Mr Kim yelling, hollering," Miss Hallwright had said in her police statement.
"Dad kept driving away. I yelled at him to stop because the guy was obviously hurt."
The court was told the incident began when Mr Hallwright was at the intersection of Symonds St and Khyber Pass Rd in Auckland.
He was in his car with Isabel waiting for the red light to change. Kim was in the car behind him.
When the light changed Hallwright did not move off, prompting other cars to sound their horns and drive around him. Kim denied tooting his horn, saying the Hallwrights were obviously arguing and he was watching them.
Miss Hallwright denied there was any argument, saying she was going to a music studio where she was to record a song with her father playing guitar. They were discussing that.
She told the court the car she believed was Kim's honked intensely and, a block on as her father went into a parking spot, came slowly by them honking.
She said her father gave the driver the fingers.
Kim then stopped his car in front of them.
"The other driver had made it was pretty clear he was going to get out of the car and come to us, or dad was going to get out and go to him," Miss Hallwright told the court.
She said her father was calm and wasn't agitated and he got out.
When he got to Kim's car the driver's door was partly opened. Her father said something and then slammed the door shut on Kim, Miss Hallwright said.
He came back to their car and Kim got out of his.
Kim claimed in his evidence he suffered varicose veins and could not walk quickly and said he had slipped forward onto Hallwright's car.
Miss Hallwright told the court Kim moved quickly and did not seem to have any kind of impairment.
She said she was afraid and locked her car doors.
"I thought he was coming to attack my dad."
She said Kim banged on the Hallwright's car bonnet.
"I don't know what he was saying but I wasn't listening, I was shouting. He seemed really angry, he was red in the face, there was spit everywhere and his eyes were wide and angry."
She said her father eased off the brakes on the automatic car and let the vehicle roll forward slightly.
Kim, she said, moved to the driver's side of the bonnet.
"Mr Kim was sort... he seemed quite far away from the car.
"My father drove forward and after what seemed a pretty long time there was a small bump while we were driving."
Miss Hallwright told court that she did not believe they had hit Kim and said she found it hard to understand how the car hit him.
In her police statement she said her father had panicked.
She told court she had wanted to run away "but I was too afraid of Mr Kim getting into the vehicle."
"I was hyperventilating."
The court is into its second day of a scheduled five day sitting before Judge Raoul Neave and a jury.
- © Fairfax NZ News
Should shops be allowed to open on Good Friday and Easter Monday?Related story: Garden centres snub Easter law