Morning Links: Daily News finally gets it, and possibly the next-to-last report on the Stephany DUI murder case

I’ve never been a fan of the LA Daily News editorial department.

Remember the laughable Summer of Cycling?

But a new editorial about the dangers of walking in the City of Angels shows they finally get it, at least when it comes to travel on two feet.

Virtually everything they write also applies to riding a bike, so let’s hope this marks a permanent change in attitude towards everyone not encased in tons of metal, as they put it.

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Our anonymous Orange County correspondent offers what promises to be the penultimate report on the murder case of self-described drug counselor Neil Storm Stephany in the heroin-fueled DUI death of cyclist Shaun Eagleson.

Courtroom C37 (Stephany case) was jurorless today as the attorneys wrangled over striking some testimony from the record. Whatever the outcome, both sides expect to present closing arguments tomorrow morning. Stephany waived his right to be present. I think he’s bored with the whole thing.

Yesterday, the People played a video of Stephany’s interrogation in which he admitted he’d gone to the court-ordered First Offender Program after his first DUI. When asked what he’d learned, he replied, “Nothin’, they really don’t teach you anything.” He also opined that the classes were just a “racket” for the government to make money. A few minutes later, when asked directly, “Did they say it’s dangerous?” Stephany answered, “Yeah.” Subsequent similar yes or no questions were all answered in the affirmative.

The video began with the phlebotomist’s difficulty in finding a usable vein to draw blood for a tox exam; she eventually has to return with a smaller needle. An officer then brings in paperwork for Stephany’s 30 day temporary license for the DMV! (Which, of course, the suspect ended up not needing.)

Several tests were off camera, in the hallway. The DRE (Drug Recognition Expert) administering the tests can be heard issuing the typical instructions and telling Stephany to stay upright. During the Romberg test, he fell asleep standing up, and failed to find his nose in ten attempts. The DRE terminated testing for Stephany’s own safety; he’d nearly fallen through an open doorway into the police supervisor’s office.

Stephany clearly remembers a collision, but repeatedly stated that he didn’t know what he had hit. When prodded, he said he thought he’d hit a car. He had stopped his pick-up very briefly, but then punched the gas when he saw people running toward him. (This corresponds to the descriptions provided by the horrified witnesses.) When asked why he hadn’t stayed at the scene, he admitted that he knew it was a probation violation and he would be in trouble.

When asked “What does it feel like when you do heroin?” Stephany began crying, and answered honestly through the sobs. In the courtroom, Eagleson’s family appeared unmoved.

After the officer left the tiny room at the conclusion of the interview, Stephany rustled through his empty pockets, perhaps trying to find his confiscated Suboxone.

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Celebrate the grand opening of the San Gabriel Valley Education Center this Sunday with a spooky Halloween Pet and Costume Bike Train.

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Bike SGV sends word that the City of Duarte is hosting a public meeting to get input from people who live or bike in the city on their new draft bike plan, next Wednesday from 6:30-7:30 pm at the Community Center at 1600 Huntington Drive.

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Wesley Reutimann sends word that anyone who lives or works in South Pasadena is invited to volunteer with the local organizing committee for next year’s Amgen Tour of California start in the city. If you’re interested, email Samuel Zneimer of the City Manager’s office at [email protected].

Next year’s race could also make it down to San Diego for the first time since 2013.

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Local

Richard Risemberg takes issue with the recent private meeting between the LACBC’s Tamika Butler and CD1 City Councilmember Gil Cedillo, calling for Butler to release the full details of the discussion to ensure transparency. Of course, if she did, she’d never get another meeting with him, or any other elected official.

CiclaValley visits North Figueroa, where Cedillo’s continued intransigence has helped keep the street deadly.

County Supervisor Hilda Solis announced plans to convert Rosemead Blvd near the Whittier Narrows into a Complete Street to improve safety for everyone.

The Eastside Bike Club will offer their annual El Sereno Día de Los Muertos altar to honor bicyclists who have died in the last year.

UCLA’s Be a Green Commuter offers up eleven awesome bike costumes for Halloween.

A student was hit by a minivan while riding on the campus of Loyola Marymount University.

The new Ted Baker London store will be the only place in the US where you can buy the Brit designer’s rose-hued bespoke Quella bike.

 

State

A Fullerton cyclist suffered head trauma when he was hit by a car Wednesday morning; fortunately, he’s expected to survive. Note to Fullerton police: Why the hell would it matter if the victim was in the crosswalk? Bike riders are allowed to cross the street, crosswalk or not. Thanks to Kathi Bloom, who came upon the scene shortly after the wreck, for the heads-up.

Also in Fullerton, a former gang member was shot with a pellet gun while riding his bike in a park; he continued riding to a hospital to get help.

The California Bike Summit starts in three days in sunny San Diego. Having attended the first one in LA, I strongly recommend going if you can make it.

A man was shot by a U.S. Customs and Border Protection officer after he allegedly got off his bicycle and approached the officer with a knife. For some reason, the LA Times — which usually knows better — identifies the victim only as a bicyclist in the headline, rather than, say, a man, as every other source seems to do. Thanks to David Wolfberg for the link.

A former Lompoc competitive cyclist and newly minted BMX racer suggests yoga to take the pain out of bicycling.

A Salinas cyclist was fatally shot after he was chased by two men, apparently in front of multiple witnesses.

Oh, the poor cars! Menlo Park votes to remove parking spaces to make room for bike lanes.

A San Francisco cyclist was right hooked by a driver who fled the scene; it will be hard to find the suspect since the car didn’t have any plates. That’s a major problem these days; too many cars travel California streets with no plates thanks to loopholes in the law and lax enforcement.

Los Altos cracks down on “reckless” riders after two cyclists are injured in solo falls. Note to the other LA: It’s not speeding unless the bike riders are going faster than the posted limit.

Next City looks at Davis, where a remarkable 23% of the population bikes to work; UC Davis has banned cars from the campus for 48 years.

Sad news from Redding, as a bike rider was killed in a left cross when a driver failed to yield while making a left turn.

 

National

Universal Sports, the channel that broadcasts the Tour de France, Amgen Tour of California and the USA Pro Challenge, will cease to exist next month. No word on what NBC, which owns Universal, will do with the rights to those races.

Bicycling reviews Timbuk2’s new Muttmover messenger bag, which is designed to do exactly what the name implies. Unfortunately, it’s about 10 pounds too small for the Corgi.

Bicycling also offers advice to cyclists planning their first tattoo. Which pretty much applies to anyone considering tatts, whether or not they’ve ever been on a bike.

Despite panicking press reports, construction of a new protected bike lane in Denver has not snarled traffic.

A previously convicted flasher was arrested in Iowa for riding a bike with his genitals hanging out of his shorts; he tucked them back in when an officer stopped him, which was taken as evidence that he was doing it on purpose.

That cyclist riding cross-country on one of New York’s Citi Bike bikeshare bike was punched in the face for no apparent reason by a bike-hating Oklahoma driver.

The University of Illinois student newspaper takes a he said/she said look at the conflict between bicyclists and pedestrians on campus.

Tragic news from New York, as a police officer was fatally shot while chasing a bike thief; the killer was arrested several blocks later with a gunshot wound to his leg.

 

International

A Montreal university study says bikes are the best way to arrive at work alert and on time.

A new survey shows 75% of Brits support investing more money in bicycling; even people who never ride a bike think funding should be increased.

One more reason to ride a bike: A researcher in the UK says diesel fumes are messing with bees ability to smell flowers.

A British solicitor says commercial drivers shouldn’t hesitate to blame the victim in a collision with a cyclist.

Caught on video: Get a handlebar-view look at what it’s like to ride a bike at rush hour in Dublin.

New Delhi held its first car-free day today, while encouraging people to take to their bikes to lower pollution.

Bicycling is gaining in popularity in running-obsessed Kenya.

A writer for the Australian says South Australia’s new equivalent to the three-foot passing law will make the roads more dangerous, even though that hasn’t happened anywhere else. He also says he gets bicycles, then proceeds to prove he doesn’t.

Now you, too, can tour Antarctica by bike for a mere $75,000.

 

Finally…

No matter how much a student driver angers you, don’t bust out a window with your U-lock and shower a three-month old baby with glass. The Internet is lighting up in response to video of a boy knocking a girl off her bike with a basketball after she tells him to fuck off. Remarkably — or maybe not, given the nature of online comments — some actually say she deserved it.

And yes, blame those damned green-loving, environmentally friendly, non-driving Millennials for the sad state of our roads.

Not the people in massive, multi-ton trucks and SUVs.

Or even the bee-killing Volkswagen drivers.

 

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