Cyclist down

We’ve been storing up a few of these “cyclist down” stories here at Drunkcyclist over the past few weeks. I started cataloging these stories many years ago as a way to advocate for cyclist safety and awareness of bicycles on the roadway. At least I felt so at the time. It has become a rather grim task of reading horrible stories about horrible things happening to real people for no discernible reason.

For example, this man was shot with a stun while riding a bicycle.

A 61-year-old Halifax County man died Tuesday, a day after police shocked him with a stun gun while he was riding his bike, family members said.

Scotland Neck Police Chief Joe Williams said they received a call Monday night about a man who fell off of his bicycle and injured himself in the parking lot of the BB&T bank, 1001 Main St. The caller was concerned that the man was drunk.

When Officer John Turner arrived, he saw Roger Anthony pedaling away along 10th Street. He followed Anthony in his patrol car, briefly put on his sirens and lights and yelled out of the window for him to stop, but Anthony continued to ride away, police said.

Williams said Turner then saw Anthony take something out his pocket and put it into his mouth. At that time, Turner got out of the car and yelled for Anthony to stop. When Anthony didn’t stop, the officer used a stun gun on him, causing him to fall off of his bike.

Anthony was transported to Pitt County Memorial Hospital, where he was declared brain dead, his sister Gladys Freeman said. He was taken off of life support on Tuesday.

The article leaves several questions unanswered. Am I to assume the man died of head injuries sustained when he fell from his bicycle after being hit with the Officer’s stun gun? It would seem a reasonable inference to make.

At 7:17 p.m. Friday, Taylor was crossing the road in front of 2039 S. Erie Highway when he was struck by vehicle traveling north on Erie Highway, according to the Hamilton police.

. . . The incident was not a hit-and-run, according to Officer Kristy Collins, Hamilton police spokeswoman. “The person stopped and waited for emergency crews,” she said. “It is still under investigation.”

There are far too many tales where actions by one party which lead to the death of a cyclist are, what’s the phrase I’m looking for, “there’s really no criminal charge.”

An 18-year-old driver who struck and killed a bicyclist in July won’t face charges in connection with the man’s death — only a $42 fine for changing lanes unsafely.

. . . John Przychodzen was riding his bike home from work when he was struck on July 22.

“His nickname was Mr. Safety,” said Chris Davis, an attorney for Przychodzen’s family.

Davis said Przychodzen was hit twice by the 18-year-old driver of a pickup truck when the driver veered sharply onto the shoulder of Juanita Drive. Przychodzen was riding on the shoulder, and was run-over from behind.

“In fact, one of the witnesses claims after he was hit, he immediately yelled out, ‘What the’ — before the truck struck him again and then ran over him,” Davis said.

After months of investigation, King County prosecutors decided there was no reason to charge the driver with vehicular homicide. Police decided the driver would face a $42 fine for changing lanes unsafely.

“Unfortunately, unless a person’s driving recklessly, they’re intoxicated, (on) drugs or alcohol, then there’s really no criminal charge on this,” said Detective Allan O’Neill of the Kirkland Police Department.

“Clearly, he was distracted,” said Davis. “And it is consistent in my experience, with a driver using a cell phone.”

One more.

It took a jury less than eight hours to find an Ottawa man who plowed through five cyclists as they rode single file in a bike lane guilty of dangerous driving and failing to stop at the scene of the collision.

. . .

Luangpakham testified at trial that he must have fallen asleep after spending all night at a friend’s house. He said he never saw the cyclists and thought he had hit a small post after waking up to the wind hitting him in the face from his caved-in windshield. He said he didn’t have a single drink before the crash.

He said it wasn’t until after he noticed a blond hair embedded in the shattered windshield that he realized he might have hit someone. Luangpakham said he never noticed blood from three of the cyclists that stained his van.

Keep it safe out there folks.

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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

46 thoughts on “Cyclist down

  1. That one in Ottawa was on a road I used to ride every single day. The conditions for cyclists there couldn’t be better. They didn’t find him intoxicated – even though he had beer bottle caps in his pockets – but agreed he fell asleep behind the wheel. The thud of the cyclists woke him up, but he decided to just keep driving home with a caved in windshield.

    One of those cyclists is still recovering, having to relearn how to walk again. Last year he did walked a 2k fun run with the other 4. Tough as nails.

  2. The last one in Ottawa happened on a road I commute on by bike regularly. I look at the location of the collision daily from my office window and it haunts me still. That happened on a clear Sunday morning, early in the morning on a sunny day. F%!ker was hungover and avoided drunk driving charges because he hid out at home for a few hours and actually hid his damaged van in his garage. He turned himself in hours later after sobering up significantly. Sickening

  3. These articles are sickening and are precisely the reason 99% of America’s population will never use a bicycle as their primary means of transportation. People are scared shitless to get out on the roads and when they read an article about a cyclist who was killed while riding in a bike lane or on the freaking shoulder of a road, with absolutely no repercussions for the driver, it only reinforces their decision to stay inside their big safe car.

    Until there are laws designed to give fair punishment for distracted driving resulting in injury, cyclists will continue to be looked upon as second class citizens.

  4. Crackheads at night, by the cop cars light, will alight in fright. Stunned and down, he broke his crown, and his pipe and cocaine spilled out after.Boo hoo.
    The other folks seemed pretty straight up though. Nothing like the old “Ican beat that bicycler to the right turn” syndrome.

  5. that 1st story is fucked. the follow up from the old guy’s sister was that he was hard of hearing, mentally ill, and rode his bike because he didn’t drive. cops killed him.

  6. Im a drunk cyclist..and a State Trooper…I gotta go with Judi, stupid fuckin move on the P.D. side.

  7. Hold on here. Tippycup, you claim to be bacon. I thought tasers were only to be used in self defense. How is a man on a bike any sort of threat to a pig in a Crown Victoria?

  8. If I read this right tippy is taking our side.

    Course I’m drinking again so that read may be off kilter.

    So sue me.

  9. …all this stuff is sad…

    …& let’s not dump on tippycup (like last time) just because he wears a badge & makes an attempt to answer…

    …for what it’s worth, i’ve got a friend in the local CHP & that dude prob’ly logs more riding miles his mtb, cx & road bike than 80% of the folks here…

    …anyway, joe…you & i both know that some cops simply can’t handle a threat to their authority, as opposed to their person…it’s understandable that they’re trained that way but every cop needs to show good judgment & a certain discretion …

    …part of the problem is in plenty a’ cops having too much of an ‘us VS them’ mentality…if that poor old dude was indeed hard of hearing & mentally ill & yet had the self sufficiency to ride a bike for transportation, an intelligent cop might have invested enough of himself in the situation to realize what he was dealing with & handled it differently…

    …the situation turned into a tragedy because of poor judgment on the cops part…obviously the man on the bike wasn’t capable of “…proper judgment…”…society has plenty of folks like that…

    …that’s something that needs to be better understood by ‘the authorities’

  10. …i would love to know how the policy is set as regards the punishment aspect for vehicle drivers who kill or maim cyclists in situations where it’s clearly the drivers fault…

    …while it’s obviously arbitrary, is there a generalized rule that if you’re willing to ride a bicycle on public roadways, you are therefore willing to endanger your own life & thus that will be considered when punishment is meted out…

    …seems like most drivers get off easy after taking a life…

  11. Joe your right. I was trying to side with the cycling crowd here. And its not just self defense. Good for non compliance etc. Just a bad choice on the cops part this time. Thats all I was saying. As far as the “claim to be” shit goes, T.J. Hardersen,Washington State Patrol #605. Enumclaw Detatchment, Non “A” type asshole, Mountain, Road, Cross, ride, race, father, husband. Look me up sometime, I aint got shit to hide.

  12. …tip of the cycling cap & cup to tippycup…

    …he just ‘hardersened the fuck up’

  13. That’s the beauty of the Intardweb. Anyone can claim to be anything.

    And while I personally have no beef with Tippycup, or Joe Friday or whoever the fuck he is in “real life”, it only takes one incident like above (and I’ve seen many) to remove any benefit of doubt I might have held for those who “protect and serve”.

    My ass. A man is dead at the hands of a coward and a bully. If this thug gets as much as a reprimand, it will be a fucking miracle.

  14. And what’s this “non compliance etc.” shit? That could range from failing to “assume the position” to having the wrong bumper sticker, or anything else you might cook up. And all y’all cover for one another. I know it. You know it. Hell, my cat knows it, even if he don’t talk much. We’re locking the wrong people up, I’ll tell you what.

    bgw, “poor judgement”? Manslaughter at the very least. “willing to endanger your own life”? And I suppose in your world rape victims asked for it. Cripes, and they talk about me posting drunk.

  15. @Sparky,

    That’s a fucking broad brush you’re using.

    It’s like saying that everyone who wore a uniform in Viet Nam or Namibia was a baby killer because some individual did something bad.

    There’s good & bad, back in SA my grandfather was a cop & he was a God, my bro in law was a cop & he was an arsehole.

    Tippy Cup’s been pretty reasonable with his posts here & I’ve never seen him get defensive or abusive, even when personally attacked.

    I reckon that he’s OK & I’m glad that he’s here for his perspective on things like this.

  16. Hurben, did you skip through the part where an innocent man is dead? I ain’t seen shit about as much as a reprimand for the porker that killed him. “Protect and serve”, my ass.

  17. No, I saw that, I also read the bit that the police officer involved had been stood down while the incident was being investigated.

    & hopefully the outcome is that he will be held accountable for his actions.

    It’s all part of the system that you vote for.

  18. Pig ain’t been “stood down”. He’s on paid vacation until this shit blows over. Lather, rinse, repeat.

    The victim supposedly placed something in his mouth. Post-mortem examination would be most illuminating, not that it’s gonna happen.

    Cripes, he was an old man on a bike. Lock your doors, people.

  19. …face it, joe…you’ve got a hard-on for cops…not one word can get posted about any kind of police action, good or bad, without you going “off” about ’em…

    …we all “got” that an innocent man died…every fucking one of us…& i’m betting 99.9% of us would surmise that, yes, that cop might skate & yes, THAT would be another crime…no doubt about that…

    …& i don’t know whether you’re drunk or not but you TOTALLY misconstrued my postings due to your blind fucking prejudice…wake the fuck up…i don’t appreciate being denigrated because of your self righteous attitude…

  20. And anyway, “the system” didn’t kill the poor guy. A dicktard that shouldn’t even be a WAL*MART greeter did. “broad brush”? Pot. Kettle. Black.

  21. It is what it is, bgw. I’ve been seeing this shit all my life. You say you got it. If you ain’t outraged, then obviously you didn’t.

  22. Sorry Joe,

    the “Dicktard” was an employed representative of the System that you voted for, that’s democracy for you.

    You’ve been seeing this shit all your life? yep maybe, done anything meaningful to change it?

    No, didn’t think so.

  23. Guess I could move to Chicago. That way I’d have more than just this one puny vote.

  24. I’m bi-polar on this issue.

    I realize most cops are ok. But the bad ones are really fucking bad.

    And the Thin Blue Line protects them in a way I do not understand.

    Answer ??

    Who the fuck knows.

  25. @FFF,

    here’s my take on it.

    You do not notice any of the people who do their job & ensure that your life is unaffected.

    You only notice things when they turn to shit.

    Police, Milatery have a shit of a job to do, you depend on your buddy to be there to back you up, (I speak from experience, I’ve been there), & when when things turn to shit, you back them, because they would back you.

    having said that I would never cover for someone who crossed the line.

    Several years ago I stepped in when a trooper was beating the shit out of a local, 3 years later we met in a pub & he apologised to me. He was a good person & frankly it’s how you deal with what you’ve been given at the time.

    Just saying..(damnit BGW)

  26. …bottom line – i think we’re all outraged by what we read in these “cyclist down…” posts…

    …let’s not piss on each others ‘sidi’s’ just ‘cuz we express ourselves differently & let’s not tar every cop with the same brush…

    …there may be ‘a thin blue line’ but there are plenty of good cops out there…if not, we wouldn’t stand a chance…

    …as bad as some might see it, it could be a lot worse…

  27. Didnt mean to start a shitstorm. Based on my training and experience in the zoo called south Seattle the cop fucked up. That’s all I wanted to say. You hate me, Ill still take a bullet for ya. You appriciate what I do to support my family, thank you. Big Jonny, sorry if this drew away from the reason for your original post. Made it home tonight with no new bullet holes. Goin to bed so I can ride in the cold before work tomarrow. Ya’ll take care and watch your asses out there!

  28. Tippycup, I respect your authori-TIE. I’ve got a friend that’s a mountain biker and a Chicago cop on the Southside…he’s definately got a different take on life than most.

  29. Fucking brutal shit happens to decent peeps trying to live the good life on two wheels. Thanks for posting these, they are difficult to read but give me pause to make the most of it every day and to play it as safe as possible.

  30. Pfaff made the point.

    when all people see and hear are horror stories about drivers not being punished for hurting/killing a cyclist, it is a huge deterrent, and that sucks. alot. before the law will go in the cyclists favor, we need to be a majority, not minority. there are not enough cyclists standing up to be counted.

    everyday, encourage someone to ride a bicycle, and offer to ride with them. that’s how it changes.

  31. Yet again, Joe talks like a man who’s never set foot in the ghetto.

    And if Mr. tippycup has spent time patrolling south Seattle, he knows the feeling of putting on body armor before going to work… and not because it’s a regulation, but because you’re entirely likely to be shot at.

    Seems pretty obvious which opinion carries weight. Rubber side down, brothers.

  32. It’s stories like me that had influenced my decision a few years ago to save my $ and then purchase the Elite Real Axiom Trainer. Sadly, I miss riding on the road, but I’d rather take .GPX files and load them into my trainer data base and get a ‘simulation’ of gradient changes/climbs than take my chances out on the road.

  33. Mikey, some of us are smart enough that we don’t have to “set foot in the ghetto”. I thank my Maker each and every day that I am one.

  34. Tippycup, nothing against you personally; wouldn’t know ya if I fell over ya. But the cop did not “fuck up”. Had the cop put the wrong date on a traffic citation, it would have been a fuckup.

    The cop made a conscious decision to use so-called “less than deadly” force on a human being who could not, by even the broadest stretch of imagination, have been considered a threat to anything but the officer’s sense of manhood. Because of that, a human being died who should be alive today. This is beyond a fuckup. It is a tragedy. And barring overwhelming exculpatory evidence, it is murder.

    And it’s bad enough when one of the unwashed passes it off as “shit happens”. When I hear that garbage from one who considers hinmself a trained professional, it makes my blood boil. Code of silence. Gotta love it.

  35. “Mikey, some of us are smart enough that we don’t have to “set foot in the ghetto”.”

    Joe— or ignorant. Try patrolling with one of tippycup’s south Seattle brethren, or CD brethren, or Pioneer Square or Belltown or Skyway or White Center or Tacoma, etc. late at night before you go saying ignorant shit. Jeebus, dude.

  36. @tjharderson state patrol #605 (aka tippycup):

    At least ya got the cojones to ID yourself. I’m Tim Joe Comstock. All these nonny-mice don’t really count, do they?

    Drop by for a chat sometime. I’m the Trailer Park Cyclist.

  37. Trailerpark, Joe Friday can afford to identify himself. He carries a gun, and, should he use it, he’s got the Thin Blue Line to cover for him.