Urgent action needed on Expo bikeway and Beverly Hills; more breaking news on the legal front

Big news on the legal front to start your week.

Along with a call for urgent action on the Expo Bikeway, and to fight hit-and-run in the seemingly heartless biking black hole of Beverly Hills.

As well as your chance to be an ambassador for bicycling in your own neighborhood.

………

Let’s start with the long-awaited Expo Line bikeway, which appears to be rapidly turning into a train wreck for Westside cyclists.

Expo Bicycle Advisory Committee member Damien Newton offers a detailed background on just how and why the plan is riding off the rails. It’s a must read for anyone who cares about the safety of cyclists on our streets.

Which is where cyclists will end up when the planned bikeway forces them onto dangerous crossings. Or when they avoid the bikeway entirely because they feel safer on busy high-speed streets than on a badly designed, rushed and corner-cutting bikeway.

Fortunately, you still have a chance to put your foot down and demand the Expo Line Authority start listening to the BAC they appointed, rather dictating bad design from above.

The LACBC is calling for concerned cyclists — and yes, you should be very concerned — to attend the next Expo BAC meeting at 8 am tomorrow at the Skanska-Rados Joint Venture Field Office, on the 3rd floor at 11390 W. Olympic Blvd.

If you can’t make it, they — and I — urge you to email the list of Expo Directors on their website today to demand a safer bikeway from Downtown to Santa Monica. They also provide a sample email you can use as a template.

It will only take you a few minutes to write and send an email.

And the bikeway you save could be your own.

………

Meanwhile, Don Ward, aka Roadblock, calls on cyclists to attend the next Beverly Hills City Council session on Thursday to demand an end to their local — and hopefully unofficial —policy of letting hit-and-run drivers off the hook without even the slap on the wrist they get in most jurisdictions.

Ward points out a recent case in which a cyclist was severely injured, and the driver actually came forward to confess. Yet the case was so badly bungled by local authorities that no charges were ever filed.

According to Beverly Hills PD a break came the next day when the alleged driver, Victoria Chin, phoned in to confess her crime. Detectives arranged for her to turn herself in that day. They requested she bring the car in as well. This is where things apparently got complicated for the Beverly Hills Detectives. After flaking on her first appointment, Chin showed up the following day along with a lawyer but without her car. Beverly Hills Detectives acknowledge that they failed to process her confession and they sent her home without booking or arresting her.

Months later, citing issues not fully understood, the case was declined by District Attorney Steven Katz. Katz claims that since there was no car in custody, and the woman confessed on the phone and not in person, there was not enough evidence to move forward with a case. Questions arise of whether this is an isolated incident or part of a larger pattern of Beverly Hills apathy towards cyclists… Paul was not the first hit and run victim in recent memory to be denied justice by the city.

………

Brett Morin, the other driver charged in the road racing death of pro cyclist Jorge Alvarado, has accepted a peal deal. He’s scheduled for sentencing on October 3rd; considering the gift of a sentence given the driver who actually killed Alvarado, don’t expect more than a slightly harsh caress of the wrist.

………

Our anonymous Orange County source reports that we finally have convictions in the case of two allegedly drunk Huntington Beach speed racers who flew off the road, critically injuring a cyclist riding on the beachfront bike path.

Yes, even separated bikeways aren’t safe from speed-crazed Southern California drivers.

And yes, both have once again gotten off with a relative slap on the wrist — even if one appears to be a tough sentence for that particular judge.

Which says far more about our SoCal court system than we should be willing to tolerate.

Glenn Michael Moore & Michael Dennis Roach are the scumbags who were skunk drunk at half past eight on a Sunday morning and racing each other down PCH (can’t be late for church!!!) when they clipped each other.  Both speeding vehicles flew down an embankment.  Moore’s car slammed into Richard Lauwers as he rode his bike on the completely segregated beach bike path.  The next speeding vehicle on PCH was the responding ambulance.

Lauwers was having a nice quiet ride after a leisurely weekend breakfast at our famous Sugar Shack.  He would’ve been home in another twenty minutes.  Instead he ended up in the ICU, where he spent six days.

On Wednesday, Moore pleaded guilty to all counts against him.  He was sentenced to fines & restitution, one year in jail (stayed), three years of formal probation, and a  “First Offender Alcohol Program.”  Oh, and his license was suspended for a year.  I can’t figure this one out, because I’m working with insufficient data here.  IF Moore was before Judge Adams, who generally presides over that particular courtroom and is lenient, AND had a good lawyer (and by all accounts his lawyer is very good), AND he doesn’t have an extensive rap sheet (he’s pretty clean in OC at least), then this is a surprisingly tough sentence.  It’s still insufficient, but it’s certainly on par for Judge Adams and our overtaxed justice system in general.

Meanwhile, Michael Dennis Roach appears to have three separate sentences for the single count of engaging in a speed contest with injuries to another: two sentences for 90 days in jail, and a third for 90 days of service in lieu thereof.  Also, three years of formal probation as well.  Dunno what this is about, but there’ll be further proceedings on the 28th. Also, the OCDA unearthed a DUI with property damage that Roach had committed in November 2001 (while driving on a suspended license, but never mind that); a second DUI within 10 years could have resulted in a stiffer sentence, but oddly, his DUI charge and its enhancement were dismissed.

Did I ever mention that I have a real problem with drivers who put everyone else at risk because they can’t keep their damn feet off the accelerator — let alone get behind the wheel when they’re drunk or stoned?

The good news is that Lauwers is okay, and back on his bike.

………

The LACBC is offering a way to become more active as a bicycling advocate in your own neighborhood. And make a real difference where you live and ride.

The new Neighborhood Bike Ambassador program is designed to empower you to influence the implementation of the L.A. bike plan, as well as programs developed by the LACBC.

The first kick-off meeting takes place tonight in the Valley, followed by four others throughout the L.A. area over the next 10 days. The meetings — and the program itself — are open to everyone; you can sign up to be a Bike Ambassador here.

………

Finally, a few other brief notes from the world of bicycling.

In a truly shocking case, a Santa Rosa driver takes his road rage off road, chasing a cyclist 100 yards onto a golf course before running him down with his car. The good news is, an arrest has been made; the bad news is, the 81-year old driver has done it at least twice before. And was still allowed to drive.

Thanks to Emily C for the heads-up.

………

The schmuck who kidnapped and murdered Louisiana cyclist Mickey Shunick pleads guilty to first degree murder in her death, as well as that of another woman. Hopefully they’ll shove him so deep into the living hell that is Louisiana’s Angola Prison that he’ll never see the light of day again.

………

Police may have solved the recent rash of Calnago thefts. The Orange County Bicycle Coalition reports hat two stolen Calnagos have been recovered when they were abondoned by the thieves outside an OC Dennys, and a third was recovered in a West Hollywood pawn shop through stolenbikeregistry.com.

No word yet on arrests in the case.

The L.A. Times offers a nice profile of Cypress Park’s Flying Pigeon bike shop and the eponymous Chinese bikes they love and sell.

………

And a PA cyclist moons a couple in a passing car, then threatens them with his bike seat before crashing into a police cruiser.

Seriously, you can’t make this stuff up.

6 comments

  1. […] original here: Urgent action needed on Expo bikeway and Beverly Hills; more – Blog This entry was posted in Blog Search and tagged aren, beach, bike, cyclist, injuring, path, road, […]

  2. karL says:

    If you want to make sure almost nothing occurs from the time you might spend then by all means right a letter. For me though so far it seems -extremely tentatively but I’ll dare share my thoughts- this buddy buddying between us and them is only a question of when if ever ‘we’ wakup as we are rival not collaborators and they are evil incarnate when it comes to ‘light’ (not threatening to the car industry) RAIL.

    Obama may lose because in his term electric -hydro etc- powered bus’s have been taken off the shelf replaced by custom transit trains prijced so obscenely anyone asking us to sign any petition for them should be spat at if that’s all you can muster.

    Check it out- in the financial district you can get a very nice home for a few weeks a year at leaseet for barely a grand a month and a few dozen grand to own the use of it for those months.

    For me, too many decades have passed since I walked aroudn there adn I’ve never been thereas an adult. I’m sorry- I didn’t recall any of the now in there death trips future tech.

    Unlike this beach line here- which we can still probably liberate enough hard cash to buy everyoen in santa monica a half kwh lifetime warranted battery- if not Los Angeles County, especiallyu as hte entire AONE company is for sell for about half a mile of it’s cost. (if a billion a mile do the math down or upform that).

    The rail’s purpose is to snarf up money that could interfere with remaining number one in how many cars we are killed by and haveh to pay acutal bills for in this town. It’s a burning MONEY project by design- if you think it’ll ever be at all helpful- more then subsidise the cost of getting skin cancer or needing pencillin from too much whatever on or near the ocean then your a child- in a bad way.

    Your like someone who shows up for a free hourmassage at a bookstore to provide fodder for 900 lines at howfver many bucks a minute to woo you from your gender and whatever other irrelevency you might scribble for the kickback. It’s shameful. The train should beboycotted and monkey wrnched and it’s right of way given to the highest bidder or only used for electric rolls royces but liberal ‘for hire’ rules for example you pay for every seat available when you board whehter your the only one and it’s empty or not.

    Bikes are light- put aroof over the trains path and let us ride on it or there just toying with us. We don’t weiggh so muchas for that to not be for lower cost per biker mile then any other proposal because it would allow so many more bikers and let’s face it- this path will be congested 24×7 if it’s nice to ride on no matter how wide it is even if it was 50 feet wide. Making it a toll roof for vehciles with less then 100lbs per mountain bike wide tire could be kickstarted but for them charging far too much- find a site like that with a cap of like $100,000 on there fee and raise the fractional trillion needed to collect the nickel a mile to ride to the waves with grace finally as if this isn’t a fascist state.

    • karL says:

      over a year ago Gary wondered about whether bikes would even be able to other then grab onto the tail of this welfare locomotive- and here is hte preview of what I just chimed in there as it imght never behave publically:
      “I do not understand this at all how can it even be considered without all hell being raised to require people get on the train and pay a premium to do so if the goal is not TO create a bottlneck for anyone trying to get closer to the coast without a car. With out one to collect a ‘poll’ tax per hour from.

      If there is only room for bikes- no space for even slower on avereage per mile pedestrians or lazy train riders or even disabled person, then so be it. Only if the least efficient alternatives get public funds last will this matter at all- and rail is CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY ENERGY WASTING. It’s trillaton ‘train’ of connected riders needing to all start stop and accelrate and declerate nefver passing with next ot no recovering of inertially energy bought so expensively that it can onlhy be wasted if only atiny tiny insignficant percentagge ofthe population taxed is able to even see the dam thing much less ride it.

      IT is so.”

      IN the 1970’s calculators became available to calculate such things between sunrise and sunset- in one day- if not moment, you can figure out how much it costs to bike, versusu train, verus anything .

      ONly bikes can pay there own way otthe coast- and we are not going to do so? Why? Why are we so cheap as ot not afford a tiny fraction of evfen the gas cost hummer owners pay? You know why. because it’s poor character- welfare mindset- free is better then bargain eeven if future generations will curse us.

  3. S.H. says:

    You mentioned having insufficient data for the Roach-Moore case and that is beyond true. You have several key facts switched around. Roach had the great attorney (from Ron Brower’s office) and wasn’t drunk, had less of a record, and received the lighter sentence. Your facts are so screwed up that you are asking for a liable suit should it not be corrected.

    • S.H. says:

      Libel; pardon my auto correct.

      • bikinginla says:

        Nothing is more important to me than being accurate here.

        However, while you state that the information provided by my source is incorrect, you offer no documentation to back it up in any way. If you can provide proof that what the information included here is not true, I will be happy to make any necessary corrections.

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