Page last updated at 08:37 GMT, Wednesday, 29 October 2008

Reeves gives car claim evidence

Keanu Reeves
Mr Reeves had been visiting a relative before the incident

Actor Keanu Reeves has given evidence in a court case brought by a paparazzo who claims the Matrix star ran him over with his car in March 2007.

Mr Reeves said he had moved his Porsche forward slowly to get Alison Silva out of his way, and denied hitting the photographer with his bumper.

Mr Silva also took the stand, and maintained he had been knocked over.

He is suing Reeves for lost wages and medical expenses. A previous claim of assault was dismissed last month.

"There was no evidence of the slightest contact or the slightest touching," said Los Angeles Superior Court judge Elizabeth Grimes.

She also ruled Mr Silva could not seek punitive damages against the actor.

The incident took place after Mr Reeves finished visiting a relative in Rancho Palos Verdes, California, last year.

The photographer had followed Mr Reeves to the residential neighbourhood, staying several car lengths back to avoid detection, he told jurors on Tuesday.

'Common sense'

He then waited for about an hour for the actor to emerge from a building, hoping he would come out with a new girlfriend.

Instead, the star emerged alone, with his hair covering his face and his eyes pointed towards the ground - a tactic Mr Reeves said he had employed to keep Mr Silva from getting a usable photograph.

After Mr Reeves entered the car, the Brazilian paparazzo said he assumed the actor would drive around him.

But the Matrix star said Silva was in his way and refused to move.

Gesturing with his hands throughout his hour-long testimony, Mr Reeves said he tried to move the car forward slowly, but that he was sure he didn't hit Mr Silva.

"My intention was to show I had the right of way," he said.

When asked whether he tried to motion Mr Silva out of the way or tell him to move, Reeves said no.

"He was in front of a started car," the actor said. "It's common sense to me."

The actor testified he saw Mr Silva's feet get tangled before he fell to the ground. He then parked his car, tried to summon aid and then came out to check on the photographer.

In his later testimony, Mr Silva said: "What really happened [was] the car hit me, and I went backward and tried to protect myself".

The photographer contends his wrist was seriously injured, limiting his ability to work.

Mr Silva's testimony was interrupted by a court recess. He will retake the stand on Wednesday, when Reeves' attorney will have a chance to question him.

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