Speeding motorist jailed over knifepoint terror for pedestrian

Updated: 

A motorist has been jailed after he held a knife to a pedestrian's throat for gesturing him to slow down.

Taunton Crown Court was told that Jason Fenby, 23, was driving through the sleepy Somerset village of Rode at 60mph on a summer evening last year when the victim gestured at him to slow down.


According to Somerset Live, Ian Fenny, prosecuting, said the victim and his wife were enjoying a walk with their dog on August 17 last year.

"Rode is a quiet village and has been plagued by speeding motorists and the victim stood in the road and made gestures at the car to slow down," he said.

"The black Citroen Saxo swerved past him and then went a little way down the road before doing a handbrake turn and speeding back to the couple.

"He was shouting, angry and abusive. He continued to rail at them and then retrieved a knife from the car and held it to the victim's neck.

"Distressing, frightening and alarming does not describe how the victims would have felt."

The court was told how Fenby then drove off at speed but the victim's wife was able to note the registration number and reported the incident to the police.

Police arrested Fenby at his girlfriend's house and found him hiding in a child's wardrobe.

Fenby refused to comment during an interview with police, but later admitted to his girlfriend what he'd done and she gave a statement against him.

Fenby was to go on trial for possession of a bladed article in a public place and driving without car insurance or a driving licence. However, he changed his plea and admitted the offences at the crown court.

The court was told Fenby was on a three-month suspended sentence for possession of an imitation firearm at the time of the offence.
In mitigation, Fenby's defence lawyer Emma Martin said: "It has taken some courage for him to admit his guilt today – he knows this was a distasteful offence, but he is remorseful about it.

"He doesn't seek to diminish what happened that day, but he says the victim did not just gesture, but kicked or tapped the car as he went buy. He perceived that as being antagonistic, although he accepts that he completely overreacted."

Judge David Ticehurst jailed Fenby for 18 months for possessing the knife, as well as activating the suspended sentence, leading to a total of 21 months, Somerset Live reported.

The judge also ordered the car to be seized and imposed a victim surcharge of £140 on Fenby.