A man deliberately tried to kill a Muslim woman by driving his car into her, just days after the Parsons Green terror attack, a court has heard.
Paul Moore is accused of targeting Zaynab Hussein because of the colour of her skin and the fact she was wearing a hijab, five days after the attempted attack in London last September.
The 21-year-old allegedly drove his Volkswagen Up! into Ms Hussein – a Somali national – after spotting her in a Leicester street shortly after 8am on September 20. Witnesses claimed he was laughing at the time.
Just moments later he is accused driving the same vehicle at a 12-year-old schoolgirl, a short distance away in an attempt to cause her serious harm.
The jury was told how Ms Hussein, a Somali national, was struck once and subsequently driven over again moments later during the incident which took place in Leicester.
A jury of seven men and five women at Nottingham Crown Court were told Mr Moore had tried to kill Ms Hussein “purely because of the colour of her skin” and her “perceived Islamic faith”.
The prosecution said four other people were in the car with Moore during the incident and they had begged him to let them out afterwards.
Opening the case against Mr Moore, prosecutor Jonathan Straw said: “(Moore) carefully and deliberately, in an act of calculated evil, aligned his wheels so the front and back wheels were over her (Ms Hussein).
“He did not know her. He tried to kill her purely because of the colour of her skin and because of her perceived Islamic faith as she was wearing a hijab.
“It is no coincidence, we say, that there had been a bomb at Parsons Green Tube station in London, said to have been carried out by sympathisers of Islamic State.”
Mr Straw said it was only thanks to members of the public and medical professionals that Ms Hussein’s life was saved.
He continued: “She had received severe fractures to her pelvis, her spine, and one of the bones in her leg was broken.
“Having deliberately, we say, tried to kill Zaynab Hussein, the defendant then drove at a second victim – a 12-year-old schoolgirl.
“He did not hit her, he brushed her, but it is only by the grace of God and nothing more that she was saved.”
Mr Straw said Moore intended to offer no defence, adding: “It may well be he has no defence. He admits he was the driver.”
In a recorded interview played to the court, Reece Bishop, a passenger in the car at the time of the alleged attack on Ms Hussein, told police: “He was just driving like a maniac. I thought we were going to be dead. He said ‘I feel like running someone over. Anyone.’
“It all happened so fast. He turned the steering wheel and he just hits her out of the blue.”
On the recorded interview with police, Mr Bishop said Moore was laughing as he drove at Ms Hussein.
Mr Moore denies attempted murder, causing grievous bodily harm with intent and dangerous driving.
The trial continues.
By Martin Evans