Man looked like ‘a comic villain’ during alleged London Underground attacks

A man looked like “a comic villain with a robotic gait” when he allegedly attacked three people at as many London Underground stations, a court heard.

Donovan Kenlyn, 39, punched Tube passenger Samer Jawad at Baker Street Underground station in October 2022, a jury at the Old Bailey was told.

Minutes later, Kenlyn got off a train at Finchley Road station and caused Angel Cambeiro to fall onto the tracks, narrowly missing live rails, it is alleged.

He then travelled to nearby West Hampstead station where he punched a third man, Peter Acton, in the back of the head, it was claimed.

The “spree of violence” at the north-west London stations lasted around 35 minutes, the court heard on Thursday.

Kenlyn is charged with attempted murder and assault causing grievous bodily harm with intent to Mr Cambeiro, of assault occasioning actual bodily harm to Mr Acton and assault by beating against Mr Jawad.

Central Criminal Court stock
The trial is being heard at the Old Bailey (Nick Ansell/PA)

He accepts that he was involved in all three incidents but denies the charges because he was suffering with schizophrenia.

In a witness statement read to the court on Friday, Mr Cambeiro said: “I was in the waiting area when I saw a male coming towards me, something wasn’t right – he was looking at me, he was coming very clearly in my direction.

“He looked aggressive – he had an aggressive manner.

“I didn’t say anything, we didn’t exchange words.

“I just remember him closing his right hand into a fist, I think I thought he was going to punch me.

“He got right into my face.

“After that all I remember was I was down on the rail tracks.”

CCTV played to the jury showed Mr Cambeiro walking close to the edge of the platform carrying two Sainsbury’s supermarket bags.

The defendant could be seen putting his arm out in front of Mr Cambeiro before the complainant fell onto the tracks.

Mr Cambeiro said: “I was struggling to get up, I don’t remember the impact, I can’t recall the exact moment before I was on the tracks.”

He said he could not move his right arm and bystanders helped him onto the platform.

“I wouldn’t have been able to lift myself up off the train tracks and onto the platform without other members of the public.

“I don’t remember much about his face because it had all happened so quickly – I recall his fist more than his face.”

Mr Cambeiro was taken to hospital with a broken arm and dislocated elbow, and on Thursday the court heard he has since had to have two surgeries on it.

Jacqueline Hylton was a TfL customer services supervisor on duty and said: “If he had touched the negative or positive rails he would have been killed by the current.”

Minutes later Kenlyn struck Mr Acton on the head at West Hampstead station.

Mr Acton was travelling northbound to meet friends shortly after midday when he spotted Kenlyn, who he thought he had seen “a couple of days ago” at Wembley Park station.

In a witness statement read to the court, Mr Acton said that Kenlyn looked like a “comic villain with a robotic gait” and that “this male made me feel uncomfortable, so I decided to move away from him”.

He moved to the other platform with an advertising board between them, but Mr Acton said: “I was still feeling uneasy and decided that there was a southbound train I would hop on and change (at a later stop).

“As I went to board the carriage I felt a hard thud to the back of my head, to the left of my ear, I felt as if I had been struck.”

He fell onto the divider between the seats.

CCTV presented to the jury showed Kenlyn running onto the carriage and then off before the doors closed.

He denies the charges and the trial continues on Monday.

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