Victim Aaron Lewis-Priest (left) and offender Neil James Robertson
Victim Aaron Lewis-Priest (left) and offender Neil James Robertson

Fatal road-rage rammer: I’m a changed man

A QUEENSLAND man jailed for 12 years for killing a motorist by ramming his car in a high-speed road-rage attack has asked a court to let him back on the road again.

Neil James Robertson, 59, a car mechanic and engine reconditioner from Kingston, south of Brisbane, has applied to Brisbane Supreme Court to overturn his judge-imposed absolute disqualification from holding or obtaining a driver's licence, claiming he is a changed man.

Mr Robertson states in an affidavit filed in court that he completed parole on October 11 last year, after he was released from prison in May 2017 after serving nine years and seven months for manslaughter, dangerous operation of a vehicle and grievous bodily harm.

He was initially charged with murder, but the jury found him guilty of the alternative charge of manslaughter.

He killed 21-year-old driver Aaron Lewis-Priest in a car-ramming road-rage incident on October 12, 2007, after he "snapped" when Mr Lewis-Priest told him, "See you later, old man," in the car park after a minor tiff outside a bottle shop at Browns Plains.

Mr Robertson said he deliberately rammed the back of the other car several times because he interpreted the gesture as obscene, and heard Mr Lewis-Priest say possibly offensive words.


Police at the scene of the fatal smash in 2007
Police at the scene of the fatal smash in 2007


In the final hit, which caused Mr Lewis-Priest's car to spin into a light pole, killing him instantly, Mr Robertson was driving at speeds up to 140km/h.

Mr Robertson fled the scene and told his partner later that night that he had followed the car to scare Mr Lewis-Priest, and he had hit the car four or five times before it went off the road, but had not intended to kill.

Mr Robertson says in his affidavit that he is remorseful and can now be trusted on the road, and he needs a licence to be able to hold down a full-time job as a mechanic, as he has spent the last few years accepting lifts from friends, using Uber and public transport.

The case is set to be heard on May 7.





Originally published as Fatal road-rage rammer: I'm a changed man