Taxi driver charged after hit-and-run
MONTREAL - Four charges have been laid against a Montreal cabbie allegedly involved in an incident seen in gruesome videos circulating on the Internet.
Guercy Edmond appeared in court where he was charged with aggravated assault, assault with a weapon, hit-and-run and dangerous driving.
The 47-year-old taxi driver from Laval will remain in prison until his bail hearing on Wednesday.
Videos posted on the Internet show a taxi driver involved in a late-night weekend dispute with several people -- and then show the cabbie's vehicle running over one of the pedestrians.
The 23-year-old pedestrian, Benoit Kapelli, is in hospital with serious -- but not life-threatening -- injuries.
Friends and family came to the courthouse in Montreal to show their support for Edmond during his brief appearance Monday, where his lawyer said he acted in self-defence.
One video sent to CTV Montreal and posted to YouTube shows the conflict escalating, with a group of men kicking at a car and one man jumping on its roof. Moments later, the vehicle drives right over one of the men. The car then darts away, down the street.
"I told you guys to get out of there!" a man is heard in the video, yelling at the pedestrians involved in the altercation.
"Anyway, it's all on tape!"
A second video surfaced Monday that shows a close-up view of the altercation.
It shows repeated attempts by the taxi to escape the mob of people surrounding the vehicle.
The taxi then does a 360-degree turn toward the crowd and one person is run over.
The video also shows a close-up of the injured man who appears to be conscious on his back.
"It gives us an even better idea of the tension if we mix it with the other video tape taken from the apartment above a few minutes before," said CTV Montreal reporter Stephane Giroux.
Local taxi drivers say that area of Montreal on St. Laurent at 3 a.m. or 4 a.m. can be dangerous with some people on the street heavily intoxicated, Giroux said.
"The guy didn't do it on purpose, he was just panicking, an act of panic . . . he didn't do it on purpose to hurt the guy," said one cab driver, Yoram Revivo.
With additional reporting from CTV News
WARNING: These videos contain graphic content