Catching up on killer driver court cases, still more bike giveaways, and last day of the BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive!

It’s the last day of the 6th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive!

Thanks to Robert H, William C and Jo Y for their generous donations to help keep SoCal’s best bike news and advocacy coming your way every day.

And help keep it free for everyone, all the time!

So don’t wait.

Take a moment right now, and give to the BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive today!

And a very merry Christmas and a healthy, happy and prosperous new year to you and all your loved ones. 

As usual, I’ll take a much needed break between the holidays to shake off the dust of this awful year. But we’ll be around if there’s any breaking news, and see you bright and early on January 4th.

Just be careful out there.

I don’t want to have to write about you, unless maybe you ran into a burning building to rescue a bunch of puppies or something. 

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It’s been awhile since we’ve heard from our anonymous courtroom correspondent, which she more than makes up for this morning.

Here’s what she has to say.

In a heartbreaking story, Randle Wayne Ommen was the cyclist killed by the allegedly impaired semi driver on Route 76 down in San Diego County last week. He would have turned 59 on December 28th.

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Also last Thursday night, a cyclist was knocked unconscious at Manchester & Normandie (near where Woon was killed) and transported by ambulance. This is all I know, and I’m furious that I can’t really find out more. With the current hospital capacity, the old method of walking around talking to the locals just unnerves me too much.

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Rojelio Martinez-Cuin accepted a plea deal in the hit-and-run death of 51-year old Michael David Tomlinson.

He pleaded guilty on December 2nd and was sentenced last Thursday. The misdemeanor count of driving without a license (due to a prior DUI conviction) earned him 6 months in County (time served).

For the vehicular manslaughter count, he received 4 years; the enhancement was dismissed. For the hit and run count, he received one additional year, to be served consecutively.

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Scuzzy Stephen Taylor Scarpa’s jury trial was pushed back to next February, and now the Defense will be filing a Pitchess motion on January 5th. Hmm. A homicidal, hypocritical, repeat impaired driver now wants to question the credibility of an officer involved in the investigation. The defense attorney who argued in the prelim that Scarpa is also a victim in this case is now attempting to portray the investigator as the bad guy. Bold strategy, Cotton.

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Samantha Cunha, who ran over her friend during a bizarre case of road rage last January, has been charged with… a single count of hit and run. She’ll be before Judge Hobbs next month, the same judge who’ll be presiding over Mariah Banks’ prelim the following week.

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Still trying to find court info about Andrea Dorothy Chan Reyes, the hit-and-runner accused of killing Whittier bike rider Agustin Rodriguez Jr., who ran all the way to a new life on another continent.

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Georgia election official Gabriel Sterling is one of us.

Christopher Krebs, former CISA dude, is also one of us. Before he deactivated his Twitter account, he made it known that he would be spending his newly gifted free time on his bicycle. Oh, and with his family, of course.

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On my commute Sunday, at an intersection that’s seen at least half a dozen collisions his year (including two crashes into a building and a recent car vs. bike), I was diverted around yet another solo collision that had pushed the guardrail three feet across the sidewalk.

At this location (with a clear line of sight to Mariah Banks’ last known address, btw), I always scootch up onto said sidewalk because the asphalt’s gouged from the frequent crashes and permanently littered with debris. The sidewalk wan’t cordoned off, probably because Johnny Law thinks nobody uses it. I got barked at by an officer (who I feel should’ve secured the damn crime scene better) after I’d hit the brakes ’cause there was about 40 pounds of debris laying on the path, which I repeat was already constricted by the incursion of the guardrail.

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In personal news, Santa baby just slipped a Surly under my tree, early. Time to wrap her with tinsel & lights!

Also. At the end of October, my boyfriend (who had the rona in April) & I spent a night at the Millineum Biltmore. We got confirmation that it was okay to bring our bikes into the room. Everything was cleared. Then, at check-out, they tried to charge us $50 for garage parking!!! We contested this at reception desk while standing there with our bikes. Sigh.

And. Noooo more hotel stays till after this virus gets its ass kicked. The button plate in the elevator and the balcony handrail above the Instagrammer-magnet as-seen-in-movies lobby were filthed up with smudges, full on handprints even. So repulsive, even if there wasn’t a pandemic going on. I’m incredibly disappointed in the Biltmore.

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Until recently, the aforementioned boyfriend had been storing his bikes, a Kilo WT & his beloved carbon fiber, in a Metro locker at the De Soto Orange Line station.

They were stolen. Right out of the locker.

He has elected to keep his new Cinelli in a storage facility a half mile away from his apartment.

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On a personal note, I’ve often complained about FedEx trucks parked in the bike lanes.

But let’s give credit where it’s due.

Last night the corgi puppy somehow slipped her harness, and was running rampant on the streets of Hollywood, ignoring my every command and attempt to entice and corral her.

I’d probably still be chasing her if a FedEx driver hadn’t dropped his packages, and managed to snag her on his fourth attempt, delaying her just long enough for me to slip the harness back on.

Unfortunately, I neglected to get his name.

But thank you, Mr. FedEx driver, whoever you are!

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‘Tis the season for still more bike giveaways.

A Hollister teen is leading a toy and bicycle drive to ensure every kid has a gift under their tree.

Kindhearted firefighters in a suburban Denver county bought a new mountain bike for a 16-year old boy after his was stolen.

A six-year old Tennessee girl started her own bike giveaway program, donating 23 refurbished bikes in just its first week — starting with her own.

A New Hampshire musician bought out all he bikes at a local Walmart to give to kids in need.

Several organizations came together for a bike and toy giveaway in Alabama’s Chattahoochee Valley.

And things like this are why I love South LA’s East Side Riders Bike Club.

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Thank goodness for drop handlebars, or this rider could be looking for a new head.

https://twitter.com/WigansDannyB/status/1340973757163331584?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1340973757163331584%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Froad.cc%2Fcontent%2Fnews%2Fcycling-live-blog-23-december-2020-279681

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Local

Santa Monica-based Spinlister has a new owner, after the bikeshare platform was purchased by LA ebike manufacturer Rokit Made.

 

State

The San Francisco Bicycle Coalition, which is arguably the most influential bike advocacy group on the Left Coast, is looking for a new full-time community organizer.

A 63-year old Stockton woman is spreading holiday cheer on her brightly festooned pedicab, complete with a glowing unicorn leading the way.

Better late than never. Sacramento is finally jumping on the Slow Streets bandwagon, opening six miles of streets to bike riders and pedestrians while closing them to motor vehicles.

 

National

Ford is touting their new warning system to help prevent doorings. Instead of warning drivers and bike riders about a potential dooring, maybe they could just keep the damn door locked until the danger is past.

Clean Technica says the new Akhal Shadow from Extans Design, with its bespoke monocoque carbon frame, is just too beautiful to ignore. Although as always with over-designed bikes like this, the question is less how does it look, and more how does it ride.

A crowdfunding campaign has raised over $24,000 to buy a new car for a Hawaii security guard who rode his bike an hour out of his way to return a woman’s wallet after she left it in the store where he works. Maybe he could turn down the car and buy a bunch of new bikes, instead.

The alleged meth-using truck driver who killed five Nevada bike riders is scheduled to appear in a Las Vegas courtroom today after he was extradited from Arizona, where he was taken into custody.

A new nonprofit bike and coffee shop is trying to fill the gap on the Navajo Nation, where many children and adults ride bikes, but there wasn’t a single bike shop despite being the nation’s largest Native American reservation. As usual, you can read it on Yahoo if the Bicycling site blocks you out.

The employees of a Denver bike shop have been keeping the operation going for most of this month, as the owner recovers from a hit-and-run while he was driving home.

Speaking of Denver, the city will maintain its Slow Streets program through the winter, with changes to adjust for winter weather.

Ugh. The carnage continues on the streets of New York, where the Daily News goes into way too much detail in describing how the most recent bike-riding victim lost his life; the city has seen 25 people killed while riding their bikes this year.

A Maryland man faces a raft of charges, including homicide and vehicular manslaughter, for the drunken head-on crash that killed one man and injured two others when he crossed the road to plow into a group ride.

Good idea. Chapel Hill NC bike riders are decorating their bicycles for the holidays to honor frontline workers.

A refurbished bike program started by the owners of an Ohio chain of car dealerships and bike shops has given away over 125,000 bicycles in the past 38 years.

 

International

Life is cheap in London, where a driver walks without a single day behind bars for assaulting two bike riders in a royal park.

 

Competitive Cycling

The sports director of men’s cycling team Israel Start-Up Nation is leading the way for women in pro cycling.

 

Finally…

That feeling when a suspected hit-and-run victim got drunk and fell off his bike, instead. A bike ride as metaphor for the dumpster fire that was 2020.

And taking your Christmas tree — and your family — home by bike in Amsterdam.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a damn mask, already. 

One comment

  1. So, did they have a BAC% on the cyclist that “fell off” the bike, or did they just take the driver’s word on it again?

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