Why I got angry, by rally driver in death crash

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A RALLY driver accused of killing a young couple by shunting them into the path of an oncoming car told police he had never meant to hurt them, an Old Bailey court heard yesterday. "The whole thing was a complete nightmare - I am full of remorse, obviously," Jason Humble, 33, told officers after his arrest. He admitted in interviews that he was hostile and annoyed with the driver of a Fiesta who was ahead of him on a dual carriageway and would not let him get past.

But he maintained: "In no way did I ram him. I never meant to hurt them at all - I never even knew them." Mr Humble, from Farnborough, Hants, has denied the manslaughter of Toby Exley, 22 and his girlfriend Karen Martin, 20, on 6 October. He also denies causing their death by dangerous driving. He allegedly nudged the Fiesta three times in the rear, causing it to crash through the central reservation of the A316 in Hanworth, west London.

He told police there was only a "very minute possibility" he could have touched the car at all. Mr Humble, a rally competitor who described himself as "the best driver ever", said Mr Exley was "obviously trying to hold me up" by driving slowly in the outside lane. "I just became frustrated with him - why wouldn't he let me past? There was no sense in it." Mr Humble said he thought the Fiesta driver was "just a wind-up person. It did annoy me but I did not ram him or anything. I sat behind him at a safe distance and flashed him, but he ignored me. I came up fairly close. I just wanted him to see I was there. Then he slammed his brakes on - the brake lights went on." The Fiesta had reeled round and gone through the reservation, Mr Humble allegedly told officers when he was arrested two weeks later. "I was just stunned ... I initially felt like stopping - the next thing I was miles up the motorway ... I knew it was not good, because he went through the thing - you do not do that without having injuries, do you?... I did not feel responsible, but if I had not been there, it would not have happened ... Two or three things just flashed through my mind. I did not know how to deal with it. I just felt like a spare prick at a wedding and just carried on driving."

Mr Humble denied he deliberately avoided contact with police and was running away or hiding. He said he went home. "I probably went to bed and cried." The first he knew of what had happened was in the local paper the following Thursday. "It was terrible." He had not thought police would believe him. "What everyone was saying was I was a murderer."

Mr Humble said he was "pissed off" when he first encountered the Fiesta as the driver was going 35-to-40mph in front of him. "But I dropped back and let him get away from me, as I hoped he would turn left or right and he would get out of my life ..."

Mr Humble denied police suggestions there was any element of malice - making him think he would "get that driver". "Absolutely not," Mr Humble replied in an interview.

Stephen Patterson, a police accident investigator, said the Fiesta was reduced to a "banana-type shape", in width about a third of its original size.

No defects found on the car which could have explained what happened.