DOVER, Del. (AP) — A hearing on a request by the ex-girlfriend of NASCAR driver Kurt Busch for a no-contact order resumed Monday with defense witnesses attacking her credibility.
Patricia Driscoll says that Busch assaulted her inside his motorhome at Dover International Speedway in September and that she still fears for her safety.
Busch’s attorneys have denied the assault allegations and have tried to portray Driscoll as a scorned woman out to destroy Busch’s career after he ended their relationship shortly before the Dover race.
The first witness to testify Monday was Nick Terry, chaplain with Motor Racing Outreach, which ministers to NASCAR drivers.
Terry said Driscoll showed up crying at his motor home on the night of the alleged assault and told him that Busch had grabbed her by the neck and pushed her against the wall. But he said Driscoll never told him, as she has testified and told Dover police, that Busch slammed her head into the wall three times. Terry said he and his wife did not notice any marks on Driscoll.
“I’m certain I didn’t see anything,” he said.
Terry testified that he initially declined requests by Busch’s attorneys to testify in the proceeding because he did not want to take sides in the dispute between Busch and Driscoll.
But Terry said he changed his mind after being shown excerpts from testimony by Driscoll, who told the court that Busch’s attorneys had threatened and tried to bribe Terry. Terry said that was not true.
“Did we ever threaten you?” Busch attorney Rusty Hardin asked Terry.
“No you did not. … You did not bribe me,” Terry replied.
“No one has offered my anything,” Terry told Family Court Commissioner David Jones.
Kristy Cloutier, an executive assistant to Busch, testified that she doesn’t think Driscoll can be believed. She implied that Driscoll once tried to get her name added to a sales contract for Busch’s North Carolina home, which Busch wanted only in his name.
“I don’t believe anything Patricia says. It seems that every time she says something, it’s a lie,” said Cloutier, who described Driscoll as “very controlling.”
Cloutier described the relationship between Busch and Driscoll as one of puppet and puppeteer.
“Patricia was the puppeteer in telling him what to do and when to do it,” she said.
Cloutier acknowledged that Busch, known in NASCAR circles as “The Outlaw,” has a temper and sometimes speaks and acts before thinking. But she said she doesn’t believe he is capable of physically abusing Driscoll or anyone else.
“That’s not the person he is,” she said.
Cloutier did say that before he talked to Dover police last year, Busch told her about the alleged incident in Dover and said he had “cupped” his hands on Driscoll’s face, as Busch himself has testified.
Busch was expected to be called back to the stand later Monday.
Driscoll has testified that Busch assaulted her after she drove from her Maryland home to Dover to check on him after he sent her a series of disturbing texts.
In one text, Busch told Driscoll that he was crying, lying on the floor and didn’t know “which way was up.”
Busch testified he had been crying earlier that night while watching “Seven Years in Tibet,” a 1997 movie starring Brad Pitt.
“It was a moving experience. … It was a spiritual movie,” Busch explained, adding that the movie led him to reflect on his own life. “There were some tearjerker moments.”
Busch said he repeatedly told Driscoll to leave his motorhome that night after she showed up uninvited and unannounced.
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