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Trial hears gang feud led to crash

A motorcyclist was killed when he collided with a van after being pursued at high speed by a rival gang member, a court has heard.

Travis Lowe sustained fatal injuries as a result of the collision on July 23 last year on Horseshoe Road in Southampton and died in hospital ten days later.

Kethyio Whitehurst is accused of unlawfully killing the 23-year-old and went on trial at the Supreme Court yesterday morning.

Prosecutor Carrington Mahoney told the jury that Mr Whitehurst was associated with the Somerset gang MOB, while Mr Lowe was affiliated to the Hamilton gang Parkside.

Mr Mahoney said that on the day of the chase Mr Whitehurst was “on the hunt” when he spotted Mr Lowe and told jurors that he kicked out at Mr Lowe as he drove up beside him on his motorbike.

Mr Whitehurst is then alleged to have bragged about what he had done on a group WhatsApp chat just 20 minutes after the fatal crash.

“Our contention is that Whitehurst saw Lowe going up Camp Hill,” Mr Mahoney said. “He sped up and went in pursuit of Lowe.

“Thereafter CCTV shows the accused proceeded to chase Lowe. Lowe was riding as fast as he could to get away from the defendant. You will see from the footage that the accused seemed with his left hand to take something from his waist area and hold it in the air.

“We then say the defendant put his hand back in his pocket while extending his left leg.”

Jurors were told that they would be shown CCTV footage of the chase that ended on Horseshoe Road, near the junction with Palm Valley Road where Mr Lowe was thrown from his bike.

Mr Mahoney told the court that Mr Whitehurst said something like “ha, ha” followed by expletives before fleeing the scene.

“Whitehurst was later arrested and his phone was taken from him,” he added. “On a group WhatsApp chat around 20 minutes after the incident the accused was bragging to his friends he had made Travis go down.”

Yesterday the driver of the van described how the motorcyclist careered into the front of his vehicle.

“I was travelling west when two bikes came at very high speed in the opposite direction,” Toriano Robinson said.

“One of the bikes was on the wrong side of the road; I stopped because I knew he was going to hit me. The bike hit us so hard the whole windscreen was busted. The rider was unconscious and people were saying not to touch him.

“Some people had called an ambulance and two nurses had come and helped him until the ambulance got there.”

Mr Whitehurst denies manslaughter.

The case continues.

It is The Royal Gazette’s policy not to allow comments on stories regarding criminal court cases. This is to prevent any statements being published that may jeopardise the outcome of that case.