Putney Bridge jogger: Jeremy Vine criticised for suggesting push suspect was a banker

BBC presenter invited his Twitter followers to guess the profession of a man who appeared to barge a woman into the path of a bus in London

Gabriel Samuels@gabs_samuels
Thursday 10 August 2017 14:21
Met Police release footage of jogger pushing woman into oncoming traffic in Putney

The BBC presenter Jeremy Vine has been criticised for suggesting the man who pushed a pedestrian in front of a London bus was likely to have been a banker.

A Twitter poll published by the Radio 2 host invited users to guess the profession of the jogger, who caused a woman to fall into the path of oncoming traffic along Putney Bridge in May.

All three options offered by Vine were for jobs in the financial sector, and the poll attracted over 1,000 votes before the presenter deleted it four hours later.

Some Twitter users condemned the poll, calling it “very insulting to those in such professions” and “prejudicial and inflammatory”, while others called for Vine’s resignation from the BBC.

Andrew Bridgen, the Conservative MP for North West Leicestershire, accused Vine of “embarking on a sort of class war” while displaying “a huge lack of judgement”.

“I bet the attacker doesn’t earn as much as Jeremy Vine. The licence-fee payer would expect better from someone costing them around £15,000 a week,” Mr Bridgen told the Daily Mail.

CCTV released by police earlier this week appeared to show the unidentified jogger shoving the woman to his right with both hands, causing her to fall head-first into the road.

Police are appealing for information on the incident on 5 May

The bus driver quickly swerved and narrowly missed the 33-year-old pedestrian, who was left with minor injuries. The Metropolitan Police said the vehicle stopped immediately and passengers on board rushed to the victim’s aid.

Officers have issued an appeal for any witnesses to the incident or anyone who recognises the jogger to get in touch by contacting Putney Safer Neighbourhood Team on 020 8785 8874, calling 101 or tweeting @MetCC.

No arrests have yet been made, the Met said on Thursday morning, but the force confirmed it had had a huge response to the appeal.

The jogger was described as being white, in his early- to mid-thirties, with brown eyes and short brown hair. He was wearing a light grey t-shirt and dark blue shorts.

Information can be reported anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or online.