LONDON — Hollywood actor Benedict Cumberbatch channelled his inner Sherlock Holmes by leaping to the defense of a cyclist under attack by four men, according to reports.
The 41-year-old — famous for playing Sherlock Holmes in the BBC detective series and superhero Doctor Strange — jumped from a car to rescue a food delivery rider working for Deliveroo, according to tabloid The Sun over the weekend.
The man had been cornered by a group of four and was being beaten up when Cumberbatch passed in an Uber vehicle on Marylebone High Street in central London with his wife, Sophie Hunter, 40.
They witnessed the cyclist being hit over the head with a bottle, prompting Cumberbatch to jump into the fray, according to the report.
“One of the males attempted to grab the victim’s cycle… He was then punched in the face, struck on the head and hit with his helmet,” the Metropolitan Police said in a statement, adding that the incident took place in November last year.
“Nothing was reported stolen. The victim did not require hospital treatment. No arrests have been made,” the statement added.
“Benedict was courageous, brave and selfless. If he hadn’t stepped in the cyclist could have been seriously injured,” the driver of the car, Manuel Dias, told the newspaper.
“Here was Sherlock Holmes fighting off four attackers just round the corner from Baker Street,” home to the fictional crime character created by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.
“They tried to hit him but he defended himself and pushed them away. He wasn’t injured. Then I think they also recognized it was Benedict and ran away.”
“He asked the rider how he was and when he said, ‘I’m OK’ Benedict just hugged him.”
“I did it out of, well, I had to, you know,” said Cumberbatch according to The Sun.
A Deliveroo spokesman said: “Thank you Benedict Cumberbatch for your brave actions.
“Deliveroo riders are heroes — their safety is our priority and any violence against them is totally unacceptable. So on behalf of everyone at Deliveroo: thank you.” — AFP/Reuters