Road rage: woman assaulted as mother looks on

2011-03-24 00:00

“DON’T you dare touch me!”

This is what a Pietermaritzburg woman yelled as she was pushed against her car by an aggressive man in a fit of road rage.

The woman (42) was driving down Burger Street on Tuesday to drop off her 64-year-old mother at the retirement home, Allison Homes. She first noticed the blue Renault Megane behind her when it pushed through a gap that oncoming traffic had made for her to turn into Burger Street from East Street.

The vehicle followed her at a very close distance. “I was travelling quite slowly,” she said as she explained how she prepared to pull off the road in front of the retirement home, “but he had plenty of opportunity to overtake me”. The woman asked not to be named.

The vehicle, with an NP registration , did not overtake. Instead, the driver hooted at her as she pulled off the road.

The woman asked him if her indicator was not working, concerned that the light may have been malfunctioning. The man driving the Megane yelled “No!” and this was when the woman began to sense there could be trouble. “You have never seen such aggressive body language,” she said.

The man pulled over and climbed out of his car. The woman, who had also left her car, asked him why he was being so aggressive, and he responded by yelling at her. And then he allegedly pushed her hard with the flat of his hand.

When she yelled, “Don’t you dare touch me!”, ee returned to his car and emerged with a sjambok and threatened to hit her and her mother with it.

“It’s the first time I’ve been so frightened,” said the woman’s elderly mother.

Struggling to unlock the keypad of her cellphone, the woman’s only thought was to phone the police for help as the man approached her. Her phone still has the call she made to the 10111 number logged, at 16.29.

A security guard at the retirement home intervened before the enraged man could reach the woman and her mother.

“If it wasn’t for the security guard, he would have killed us,” says the woman, visibly upset, “That security guard saved us.”

She still doesn’t know why the incident happened. “I didn’t crash into him or even swear at him.

She plucked up the courage to drive again after a serious accident. she said, and the assault has left her shaking and vomiting constantly.

“I’m actually too scared to drive,” she added. “He’s putting fear into women like me. I want to warn all the women out there. I’m not going to allow him to get away with it.”

Police spokesperson Joey Jeevan confirmed that a case of assault has been opened, and said that the police are investigating.

The woman asked that her name and that of her mother be withheld for fear the suspect may try to harm them further.

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