‘I don’t want to be a hero – I just want justice for victim’‚ says petrolhead who posted video of drag racing assault


‘I don’t want to be a hero – I just want justice for victim’‚ says petrolhead who posted video of drag racing assault

Bongani Mthethwa | 2017-01-30 17:19:07.0

Image by: Wesley James Smith via Facebook

A Durban resident who posted the shocking video of a man being beaten by drag racers on Facebook says he does not want to be a hero but wants to see justice being done to the victim.

Wesley James Smith‚ who was not present when Kuben Pather‚ 33‚ from Chatsworth was attacked by drag racers at a petrol station on Durban’s Umgeni Road last week‚ made a statement to the police on Monday.

He has condemned the attack on Pather‚ describing it as “100% wrong” and “mob justice” against someone who could not defend himself.

“I want justice to be done for this guy no matter how wrong he was. Two wrongs don’t make a right. It does not give them a right to play God by kicking a person‚” he said.

Shortly after Smith had posted the video on Facebook it went viral but since then he has taken a lot of flak with some people accusing him of playing a hero.

“I don’t want to be a hero. I just want justice for what happened. I think the fact that racing has come to a massive light the public now automatically thinks that everyone that races is generalised in the same category.

“I’m getting cursed among everyone that I know and people think that I want to be a hero. I don’t think that’s fair. There is a lot of us that go to the track‚ do things properly‚” said Smith.

He said he would like to know the person who took the video “because I would like to ask him why he did not intervene and why he thinks it was better to take the video because had I been there on the night‚ I know I am not a professional boxer‚ but I would have tried to intervene and that would have made a difference.”

Smith‚ who describes himself as a “petrolhead with a money hungry racecar” ‚ believes he made a difference by posting the footage on Facebook.

“If one guy made a difference there like I did on Facebook‚ it would have been a different outcome‚” said Smith.

He is concerned that people are painting a bad light on racing and now the public believes that everyone who takes part in it is a vigilante who takes the law into their own hands.

“Drag racing is a controlled environment. The mere fact that we are able to go out an enjoy ourselves is a big thing. Street racing starts at every robot‚ you line wherever you are and that’s what it is. To me I think it’s pathetic but that’s my opinion‚” he said.

Pather‚ a small plant mechanic with the eThekwini Municipality‚ has laid a case of common assault against his attackers at the Sydenham Police Station. He told the police that he was driving along Umgeni Road when he noticed a vehicle speeding behind him. He then stopped and jumped out of his vehicle and was approached by a group of people who assaulted him.

Police said the matter was being investigated but no arrest has been made in connection with the incident.

-TMG Digital/TimesLIVE

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