Kurt Bayer

Kurt Bayer is an APNZ reporter based in Christchurch.

Hit and run victim 'lucky' to be alive

File photo / NZ Herald
File photo / NZ Herald

The victim of a hit-and-run at the weekend says he is lucky to be alive.

Blair Vinson, 28, was mowed down outside Burger King in central Christchurch at 3am on Saturday, hours before another hit-and-run in the city claimed the life of a pedestrian.

Mr Vinson, a painter from Papanui, had surgery this morning and is in severe pain in hospital but is recovering well after suffering a broken jaw and two broken legs, his mum says.

Lana Vinson said her son, a former University of Canterbury student, knows he's "lucky" to have escaped with his life.

But she refused to speak any further, not wanting to jeopardise the ongoing police investigation.

Police are today interviewing to the alleged driver of the green four-door car which struck Mr Vinson in the Burger King carpark before speeding off down Moorhouse Ave. They have already spoken to the passenger.

Restaurant staff reported that before the injuries were sustained, a physical altercation had broken out between a man on foot and the passenger of a car in the drive-through.

Earlier today, an 18-year-old man charged with the fatal hit-and-run in Hornby was granted bail after a brief court appearance in Christchurch.

Harry Silcock, a welder, has been charged with being the driver of a vehicle involved in a fatal accident and failing to render assistance.

A man in his early 20s died and three other people were injured when they were hit by a car in Shands Road about 10.20pm on Saturday.

Silcock, who lives with his mother in Burnham, outside Christchurch, was allegedly the driver of a red Toyota involved in the tragedy, which police said could have been the result of racing or an overtaking manoeuvre.

Selwyn Police sub-area commander Senior Sergeant Stu Munro said officers had been patrolling that area earlier in the night, and had moved people on shortly before the crash.

Witnesses say cars were "racing" at up speeds of up to 140km/h before the incident. They say neither car stopped at the scene.

Shands Rd resident Margaret Harrington said from about 10.20pm on Saturday she heard "boy racers" travelling at speed past her gate.

"It sounded like hundreds of them. You could tell that some of them were passing each other," she said.

Silcock's lawyer James Rapley asked the court for his client be remanded without plea on bail until his next court appearance on October 1.

He said Silcock handed himself in to police voluntarily last night, accompanied by his mother and aunt.

In court today, friends and family were supporting Silcock who was wearing a black hoodie and kept his head bowed throughout the short hearing.

Further charges were likely, Mr Rapley said.

Police did not oppose bail.

Judge Michael Crosbie granted bail with the conditions that Silcock observe a night-time curfew, did not drive a car and did not drink alcohol.

Outside court, Mr Rapley said his client's "very normal" family was devastated.

"Harry is a young man who is coming to terms with a tragedy," he said.

"Our thoughts go out to the family of the deceased."

Silcock's family members refused to comment.

The occupants of a Suzuki Swift, which might have been one of the cars involved, came forward yesterday.

"We still have to evaluate all the evidence we've obtained in relation to both drivers," Detective Senior Sergeant Greg Murton said earlier.

"It may have been an overtaking manoeuvre or they may have been racing. We're not too sure at this stage."

- APNZ

© Copyright 2014, APN New Zealand Limited

Assembled by: (static) on red akl_a4 at 28 Jul 2014 18:41:19 Processing Time: 437ms