Unproven “white privilege” claim in Dr. Michael Mammone murder, and 13 years for meth-fueled death of Laura Shinn

Fox News is repeating unproven claims the Dana Point killer muttered “white privilege” while fatally stabbing Dr. Michael Mammone last Wednesday.

The network had apparently removed references to the statement from their earlier stories, but resumed claims Tuesday that 39-year old Vanroy Evan Smith had made the racist comments after brutally running Mammone down from behind as he waited at a red light on his mountain bike, then getting out of his car and stabbing the Laguna Beach emergency physician to death.

Fox based their story on a report from a Chicago ABC affiliate, which cited a “neighbor” who declined to be interviewed on camera, but who claimed to have heard the comment after running outside, following what sounded like a gunshot.

However, there is no mention of the allegation in the story from Los Angeles-based ABC affiliate KABC-7.

The Orange County DA’s office also said they were unaware of the allegations. And those closer to the incident, such as the witnesses who disarmed Smith following the stabbing, have apparently said nothing to support the allegations of racial bias in the attack.

Photo of Dr. Mammone ghost bike by Photo by Walt Arrrrr.

………

That’s more like it.

Thirty-nine-year old Adam David Milavetz was sentenced to a well-earned 13 years behind bars for the meth-fueled death of noted architect Laura Shinn as she rode her bike to work in San Diego’s Balboa Park in 2021.

Milavetz was sentenced to spend three years in county jail for an assortment of misdemeanor counts, including drug possession charges. He will then be transferred to state prison to serve another ten years for manslaughter and other felonies.

He pled guilty to running Shinn down from behind while she was riding in the painted bike lanes on Pershing Drive.

After the crash, witnesses saw Milavetz run across the street to toss a bag over a fence, which was later determined to contain several smaller bags of meth. Police also found meth, fentanyl and hypodermic needles in his car following his arrest.

Pershing Drive was slated to receive a two-way protected bike lane and pedestrian pathway before Shinn’s death; the project is expected to finally be completed in 2024.

Just a tad too late to save Shinn’s life.

And if that doesn’t piss you off, it sure as hell does me.

………

CicLAvia is partnering with Los Angeles Ale Works in Hawthorne and Culver City to kick off the 2023 season this Friday, with the launch of their new seek-la-VEE-a West Coast IPA.

The free event will be held in conjunction with the Culver City Arts District Night Market.

It serves as the prologue to eight CicLAvias this year, including two CicLAminis, starting with the curiously straight The Valley CicLAvia on Sherman Way February 26th.

But seriously, with do we really need another West Coast IPA? How about a nice dunkel, doppelbock or black lager for a change?

………

Allow me to offer a correction from yesterday’s post.

The tweet below portrays new bike lanes on Central Ave in South LA, not Alameda in DTLA as I somehow insisted, even though it says Central Ave right there in the tweet.

To further complicate matters, I thought I was writing about was this community bike ride celebrating the new bike improvements on Anaheim Street in Wilmington.

And even then I still got it all wrong.

………

Good question.

………

The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes just keeps on going.

No bias here. A Santa Barbara writer complains about bicyclists “hurtling” along the State Street promenade, claiming it’s only a matter of time before someone hits “one or more unsuspecting people out for a leisurely stroll.” Never mind that a green bike lane had to be removed from the street because people wouldn’t stop walking in it. 

A Victoria, British Columbia columnist says it seems like open season on bicyclists, as drivers go out of their way to make riding more difficult. And dangerous.

No bias here, either. London’s Telegraph insists injuries have surged on a new protected bike lane, based on just three — yes, three — bicycling injuries. Which is 300% more than before, when no one rode there.

………

Local 

Streets Are For Everyone’s Damian Kevitt recaps the recent die-in at Los Angeles City Hall.

Urbanize says a decade-old Complete Streets proposal for South LA’s Broadway-Manchester corridor is still alive and kicking; the $46 million makeover would include a four-mile Class IV cycle track, pedestrian and bicyclist amenities, and hundreds of new trees. Both streets are on the city’s High Injury Network for the sadly neglected Vision Zero program.

Streetsblog reports the UCLA Institute of Transportation Studies will host a Biking While Black film screening and panel discussion tonight at the James Bridges Theater.

Longtime LA-area civic leader Rick Cole calls for making Pasadena a 15-minute city by bringing back the streetcar.

Tiny South El Monte will invest a $1.6 million state grant in implementing Safe Routes to Schools, with pedestrian improvements planned for 23 sites across the city; however, it doesn’t seem to include plans for any bike infrastructure.

The Los Angeles Business Journal looks at Swiss ebike maker Thömus SA’s new Santa Monica HQ and flagship retail boutique on Montana Ave. And no, I still haven’t heard from them. 

 

State

In an apparent attempt to increase deaths and injuries among bike riders and pedestrians, while fanning the flames of the climate crisis, a San Diego state legislator has introduced a bill to legalize cruising everywhere in the state, and prevent police from enforcing local ordinances banning the practice.

A Los Olives bike rider suffered major injuries when they were struck by a driver Monday afternoon; the fire department notes the victim was wearing a helmet, which may or may not have had anything to do with the outcome.

 

National

Ebike sales have slowed for the first time in five years, as prices have climbed 25% since the start of the pandemic.

An outdoor site recommends five national parks for beginning bike riders.

Burglars targeted a Portland bike shop for the fourth time in less than a year.

A Bellingham, Washington writer makes the case for lowering the state’s DUI blood alcohol limit to .05.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever stole a Denver woman’s bike after she had ridden across four continents and 35 countries, while raising thousands of dollars for charities along the way.

A pair of bills in the Virginia legislature would allow bike riders to legally proceed on leading pedestrian intervals, as well as legalizing the Idaho Stop for stop signs and traffic signals.

Atlanta is receiving $30 million in federal funds to improve access and safety for bike riders and pedestrians, which will be matched with $10 million in funding approved by local voters.

 

International

New data shows London’s congestion pricing plan has been an unqualified success; the plan — which has outlasted two mayors, six prime ministers and one queen — has resulted in a nearly 50% drop in motor vehicle traffic since 2002.

Interesting idea. A London-based startup plans to retrofit existing freestanding bike racks with heavy-duty chains that lock and unlock with a smartphone app. Although the question would be who is responsible if your bike gets stolen anyway.

They get it. The UK’s Department for Transport says plans to boost bicycling and walking must take women’s safety into account.

France’s bicycling federation calls for urgent action to improve safety after bicycling injuries and fatalities jumped 30% last year over 2019; they blamed much of the increase on “increasingly aggressive” drivers, particularly in rural areas.

A new Dutch study shows that people who buy ebikes more than double the amount they ride — and the results are the same when people are provided one as part of a trial program.

 

Competitive Cycling

Italian pro Marta Cavalli says she’s ready to go, after a 2022 campaign that was cut short by a concussion in the Tour de France Femmes.

Organizers have cancelled Turkey’s four-stage Tour of Antalya in the wake of the devastating earthquakes that have killed thousands of people in Turkey and Syria.

 

Finally…

That feeling when you announce a new road diet to your constituents, even if you don’t know what a road diet is. Or when you need a “cute li’l mascot” just to remind drivers not to be jerks and run people over.

And sometimes the old “pull my finger” gag means something entirely different.

………

Be safe, and stay healthy. And get vaccinated, already.

Oh, and fuck Putin, too.

 

One comment

  1. J says:

    The patent pending portions of this lock are pixelated in the overview video on Vimeo BUT:

    Permanent mounting on existing racks is sad. It needs GPS and TRUST allows people to use it and even travel with it short distances only ‘returning it’ when heading home.

    That’s what I thought this was about. A shared secure lock not a inefficient old school concept. The real market would be in rack replacements if modernizing them to include the locking mechanism. Universities take there racks down for powder coating (oven baked repainting) routinely. Giant should of left rack making to itself and let this concept evolve further before mass-producing it.