Driver accused of killing Northamptonshire man claimed he was victim of ‘monkey’ racial abuse, jury hears

Flowers left in memory of Lorenzo Gallucci in the Splash car park in Rushden

Flowers left in memory of Lorenzo Gallucci in the Splash car park in Rushden

0
Have your say

A driver who allegedly killed a 60-year-old Northamptonshire man after hitting him with his car claimed he had been racially abused, a court heard.

A trial is currently being held at Northampton Crown Court in the case of Mohammed Hirsi who is accused of killing Lorenzo Gallucci in Splash swimming pool car park in Station Road, Rushden.

Lorenzo Gallucci died after being involved in a collision with a car in Splash car park in Rushden

Lorenzo Gallucci died after being involved in a collision with a car in Splash car park in Rushden

A jury heard on Monday that Hirsi and Mr Gallucci were both at the Rushden Old Band Club on September 20, 2014.

It is alleged that Hirsi, the partner of a friend of the girl who was hosting an 18th birthday party in the function room upstairs, became involved in a confrontation with a man as he was leaving the club shortly after midnight.

Andrew Copeland, prosecuting, said the man’s mother then turned up in a Volkswagen Passat, which she parked on Station Road outside the club, to pick him up.

The court heard that Hirsi is then alleged to have smashed the back window of the Passat parked outside the club using a metal pole.

Mr Copeland said it was the prosecution’s case that, after returning to his own vehicle in the Splash car park, Hirsi used it as a “weapon” to cause harm to Mr Gallucci and another man, who were among a group of people who had followed him to the car park.

The court heard that witnesses stated Mr Gallucci was knocked backwards 10 feet, causing a fatal head injury.

During cross-examination of the woman who owned the Passat, Mr Corrie, defending, put it to her that her son had racially abused him and called him a ‘monkey’.

Mr Corrie also claimed that Mr Gallucci, who was the woman’s brother, had also racially abused Hirsi and attempted to punch him.

However, the witness denied that her son or brother had aimed any racial abuse at Hirsi.

A friend of Hirsi’s girlfriend, giving evidence on Tuesday, said she had spoken to him the day after Mr Gallucci was hit by the car.

The witness said Hirsi told her “not to take sides” and “not to snitch”.

The woman said Hirsi asked her “Is it ok for the side of my car to be smashed? Is it ok for someone to call me a monkey?”.

Hirsi, of Camden, London, was arrested on September 22, the day after Mr Gallucci died in hospital.

Hirsi gave a series of ‘no comment’ interviews to police. He was later charged with manslaughter, affray and damaging a Volkswagen Passet. He denies all the charges. The trial continues.