A CYCLIST studying at Oxford University has told a jury he was “shocked” after accidentally hitting a researcher with a bike lock.

Luke Wilmshurst, of Banbury Road, Oxford, denies causing actual bodily harm and criminal damage during a violent argument outside Oxford University’s biochemistry department last year.

The 41-year-old was a masters student on June 15 last year when he struck biochemist Sapan Gandhi over the head with a metal D-lock, which left the researcher needing staples to a 3cm wound.

But yesterday, Wilmshurst took the stand at Oxford Crown Court and said the complainant, who was driving a Vauxhall car, was “very hostile” following a near collision with his bicycle.

He said: “He aggressively came out of the car towards me and I was afraid.

“He was very aggressive, very angry and very hostile.”

Wilmshurst, who is short-sighted and had lost his glasses during the incident, was asked by defence barrister Daniel Lister how he came to strike Mr Gandhi with the bike lock.

He answered: “I tried to take the bike and leave – the lock was in my hand. I just motioned for him to back up.

“It wasn’t much of a forward motion, I tried to suggest as if I was going to motion forward, to try and get him to back up.

“The idea that I had was to try and reach out as far as possible to get him to move back. I just tried to swipe to get him to move back.

“I was very shocked when it made contact.”

The barrister said: “You didn’t mean to hit him on the head?”

Wilmshurst replied: “No, not at all.”

The trial continues.