Bikers Down

This is a bad as anything ever could be.

A couple who survived a head-on collision two years ago were killed Thursday morning when a truck slammed into them as they rode a tandem bike in Northwest Bexar County, authorities said.

Gregory and Alexandra Bruehler, parents of a 7-year-old girl, were struck from behind while riding their two-person bicycle on the shoulder of Texas 16, about three miles north of Helotes.

Alexandra Bruehler, 36, was pronounced dead at the scene. Her 42-year-old husband was airlifted to University Hospital, where he died about an hour later. Their daughter, Kylie, was not with them.
See mysanantonio.com.

Erik over at tucsonbikelawyer.com has a write up as well. Be warned, Erik posted a photo of Kylie standing at her parents memorial service. It’s brutal. It broke my heart in two.

A trust fund has been set up for Kylie Bruehler.

Donations can be made at any Frost Bank or by mail to 24165 Interstate 10 West, Suite 217-270, San Antonio, Texas 78257-1160.
See biketexas.org, obit.porterloring.com.

That poor girl is facing a lot of pain. No child should ever have her parents taken from her like that. No child should ever have to bury her parents at that age.

True to form, the driver is not facing charges. At least not currently. I lost it and posted a error filled comment on Tucson Bike Lawyer. Not the tightest thing I’ve put together in my life, that’s for sure. But I stand behind the substance. Bottom line – this is bullshit. You do not kill two people with a pickup truck and walk away. Not on my watch. No way.

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About big jonny

The man, the legend. The guy who started it all back in the Year of Our Lord Beer, 2000, with a couple of pages worth of idiotic ranting hardcoded on some random porn site that would host anything you uploaded, a book called HTML for Dummies (which was completely appropriate), a bad attitude (which hasn’t much changed), and a Dell desktop running Win95 with 64 mgs of ram and a six gig hard drive. Those were the days. Then he went to law school. Go figure. Flagstaff, Arizona, USA

16 thoughts on “Bikers Down

  1. this just knocked me on my ass. i can’t believe the driver got away with murder. yeagh, i said murder. he took everything away from that little girl. that picture is a heartbreaker… that driver should be made to look at that photo everyday for the rest of his life– and, that’s just for starters….

  2. I know what you mean, but I had my hissy about it back a few days ago when I posted it to my blog. I don’t know what we can do about the situation, because you can pass all the laws you want but if LEO won’t enforce them nothing will be done. Perhaps a civil rights suit against the LE organization in question might do something about it, but not being a lawyer I have zero idea how to even begin the process. I know civil rights are being violated by the failure to prosecute, but I don’t know how those rights are expressed except the catch-all of the 14th amendment.

    I leave that as an exercise for the law student running this blog. Do it for the kid Jonny.

  3. Thanks for posting this. Heartbreaking beyond words, not least of all because I have a 7 year old daughter myself. I felt completely helpless looking at her face. Poor kid.

    Re: whether laws will work: while there are plenty of people who are just a menace — whether due to alcohol and drug abuse issues, emotional problems, or whatever — there are many, many more who just feel entitled to drive without thinking or paying attention. Those folks might pay a little more attention if they find there are penalties beyond a traffic ticket for killing a cyclist. Along those lines, here’s a link to a site that should be of interest at least to Seattle/WA State cyclists: http://www.cascade.org/Advocacy/traffic-justice-summit.cfm

  4. Heartbreaking. Happened just down the road from me. Well, down the road by Texas standards, less than an hour away. The response from law enforcement sounds about right for Texas. Texas cops don’t charge drivers unless they have to. The fucker that hit me was never charged, even though he HAD to run a red light to even be in the place to hit me. In a hurry to get to Luby’s… Wrote it up as “Failure to yield right of way” Not even a ticket.

  5. Maybe this will be the one that wakes people the fuck up. Drivers like that need to do significant time in fuck-you-in-the-ass shithole prisons.

  6. I am suddenly overcome with thoughts of finding the F-Shitfifty driver’s house and showing up in the wee small hours of the morning with a rented log chipper. Of course this doesn’t help.

  7. Stavanger, Norway. Crying my eyes out. Perp getting away with it and no cops giving a shit? That’s global. Cyclist are free range. By sheer optimism (I just read Brideshead Revistited you see, I’ve tweeted Mr. Armstrong for his (NIKE’s) opinion.

  8. …the story is exceedingly tragic…

    …the photo tore my heart out…

    …& while i understood the sentiment of everyone showing up on bikes, i wondered what kind of association that young lady would make w/ bicycles for the rest of her life…

  9. …ya know dave…we don’t get along about a lotta stuff but right now, i’ve got tears in my eyes thinking i hope you’re fucking right…

  10. Texas hasn’t been doing too good lately.

    Recently a cyclist was killed on a road frequented by roadies, not too far from where a cyclist was killed about a year earlier. Only difference is this time the driver is being charged. Guess last years “the sun was in my eyes” excuse was a legitimate reason for accidentally taking a life? And not too far away, only a few days ago, another cyclist is found in a ditch dead of unknown causes. No impact signs, investigation continues…

    http://www.star-telegram.com/189/story/1638361.html?storylink=omni_popular

    As far is Gov. Perry, I guess we can’t expect much. With Big Trucking on his ass I am sure he wouldn’t consider passing something like a safe passing act. Probably more concerned with fraternity like pranks to try and disparage potential political opponents anyway.

    And besides, worst of all, this is a man who potentially has a little blood on his own hands and would rather try and cover it up, so it seems. Whoops, allowed the execution of an innocent man? Better not let that report get out:

    http://www.cnn.com/2009/CRIME/10/01/texas.execution.probe/index.html

    Maybe that is why Texas leads in executions. Kill’em all let God sort’em out? I say that only pseudo-jokingly. Like there is really a joke in any of it.

  11. I live in SA. I heard the reason he is not being charged is they couldn’t prove he was distracted. As in he wasn’t texting or messing with the radio, lighting a cig, tossing his empty on the road side etc…

    A great group of cyclists I am proud to be associated with rode out the the funeral and acted as honour gaurd.

    Tragic.

  12. Can’t prove he was distracted???? He killed two lawful road users by hitting them from behind. I should think this guy would be going to great lengths to show he was distracted. It doesn’t seem in his interest to show he hit them while he was paying attention.

    If you get in any kind of fender-bender you are going to be ticketed for “failure to control your vehicle,” even if that fender-bender was ultimately caused by an act of God. The bent fender is treated as proof you were not in control of your vehicle.

    Why are fenders more important than the lives of cyclist? Oh — forget I asked.

  13. So if he wasn’t distracted that would mean:

    1) He saw the cyclists and they suddenly swerved into his path where he could not avoid the collision.

    2) He saw the cyclists and intentionally hit them. (obviously they don’t think this was the case)

    3) He was not distracted but couldn’t see the cyclists due to some obstacle.

    4) He saw the cyclists, attempted to pass and misjudged his distance, striking them from behind.

    5) ???

    I have a hard time seeing how he is not somehow at fault here if the cyclists were not at fault. I hope a proper investigation is underway.

    I-35 N was shut down for a while on Sunday to investigate an accident in which three people were killed a while back. That is a pretty major undertaking. I would hope two killed would elicit even a fraction of this type of response. My fear is it is easiest to say the cyclists were at fault, end of story.

  14. Here’s what I’m hearing through back channel communications. An unnamed agency is investigating the Bexar County Sheriff Department for civil rights violations related to prosecution of traffic wrecks, in that there were 3 people killed who were not in cars and none of the drivers has even gotten a ticket. I’m not at liberty to release my source yet, as I haven’t been able to vet it as reliable.

    And I ask myself, even if they do find violations, what can they do about it?

    As for the driver in this wreck, it’s known from evidence at the scene he left the road at least twice before hitting the tandem from behind on the paved shoulder of the road. Legally the couple weren’t even riding in the road as the paved shoulder is not part of the legal road, except for bicycles.

  15. This story is one of the many reasons I left Texas, never to return. The negative mentality towards cyclists is second only to Florida. God bless the little girl.