Reading cycle crash driver guilty of attempted murder

Image caption,
Darren Fordred suffered "catastrophic injuries" in the attack in Northumberland Avenue, Reading

A labourer who left another man with "catastrophic injuries" by ramming him with his car has been found guilty of attempted murder.

Mark Whittaker was in a long-running feud with Darren Fordred and used his car to knock him off his bike.

Whittaker, 46, of no fixed abode, then attacked Mr Fordred as he lay on the ground in Northumberland Avenue, Reading, last October.

He will be sentenced on 29 April, the judge at Reading Crown Court said.

Whittaker had previously admitted causing grievous bodily harm, but had denied he intended to kill Mr Fordred.

Jurors were told he had sent death threats to Mr Fordred and had threatened to cut off his head.

Michael Roques, prosecuting, told the court Whittaker "worked himself up into something of a rage" before the attack while drinking alcohol and smoking cannabis.

Mr Roques said Whittaker, who was disqualified from driving, deliberately mounted the pavement at more than 30mph.

The crash caused both of Mr Fordred's thigh bones to snap, he said.

"Rather than call an ambulance, the defendant got out of his car and attacked Mr Fordred whilst he was on the floor," said Mr Roques.

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