It’s happened again.
According to the My Desert website, a Cathedral City cyclist was killed leaving a shopping center last night. And once again, the driver fled the scene.
But for a change, he turned himself in later.
The site reports that 70-year old Edward James Shaieb had just left the Canon Plaza shopping center on his bike just before 8 pm, apparently after collecting plastic bottles for recycling. An SUV driven by 27-year old Brandon Melton of Palm Springs was traveling west on East Palm Canyon Drive east of Golf Club Drive when he hit Shaieb; no word on which direction the victim was riding or where he was positioned on the street.
A number of motorists stopped to help Shaeib, including a doctor and nurse, but they were unable to resuscitate him; he died at the scene, with the bag of plastic bottles he’d been carrying scattered across the roadway.
Melton called police about 20 minutes later after he’d arrived back at his home. KESQ-3 reports he was arrested on manslaughter, felony hit-and-run and DUI charges.
Based on a number similar cases, however, the hit-and-run charge is unlikely to stick, since he called police himself.
There was also a female passenger in the SUV, which may be why he turned himself in.
My Desert notes that Shaeib was not wearing a helmet; whether it would have done any good depends a lot on the speed of the vehicle that hit him.
This is the 17th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the second in Riverside County. Shaeib is also the second victim — or maybe third — victim of a fatal hit-and-run since the first of the year.
My sympathy and prayers for Edward Shaieb and all his loved ones.