On Tuesday March 9th, at around 5.30pm, I was cycling west along Oxford Street, London, near Dean Street, when a taxi suddenly swerved across the front of me to pick up a fare and we collided. Following a brief verbal exchange, the taxi driver grabbed the scarf around my neck and strangled me until I was unconscious. When I regained consciousness the police were on the scene.
What seemed an open and shut case in my favour has gone horribly wrong in light of the appalling fact that the subsequent investigation failed to retrieve CCTV footage and also failed to secure the details of a witness who saw the entire incident. This witness was giving me first aid when I regained consciousness and assured me he had seen everything. The policeman on the scene assured me, twice, that he had taken the details of that witness. Two months later, when I was charged, I queried that same police officer about that witness and he denied his existence. According to him the witness is a "Figment of my imagination. You have made him up."
The taxi driver's defence is that I attacked him without provocation. A passenger in the car behind saw the scuffle and believes he may have seen a singular punch thrown, although crucially states he didn't see a punch connect (there certainly was a scuffle, I was having the life strangled out of me at the time) and on that basis, regardless of damning photographic evidence that shows vicious swollen bruising around my neck (backed up by the police medical examiner's report that indicates the same), because I have no witness or CCTV evidence to corroborate my story, the CPS has taken the taxi driver's version of events and charged me with assault.
In a week's time I will enter a plea of not guilty. My solicitor has warned me that legal costs could be around £5,000, and that's just if the CPS find me not guilty. This is a huge kick in the teeth and leaves me on the brink of a criminal record for a crime I did not commit, while the person who was extremely violent towards me hasn't even been cautioned.
Somewhere out there in this wonderful London town is *that* witness, and maybe a passing cyclist, motorist or pedestrian who also witnessed the taxi driver strangling me. If so, I really hope you are reading this.
I have canvassed all shops in the area for witnesses and private CCTV and return this week to speak to opposite shifts and put up notices. I have queried Westminster CCTV, along with their Traffic Wardens & Refuse Collectors who were working in the area at that time, and also queried London Transport about static and vehicle cameras. I am aiming to get ads and letters in the London press this week.
Someone out there must have seen something.
If you have any information, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you for your time.
For the record I have no previous charges or cautions and am more inclined to want to talk to people rather than attempt to murder them.
You can find out more about me HERE