A manhunt is on in San Bernardino County after a bicyclist was killed in what police describe as an intentional attack.
According to the Desert Dispatch, 40-year old Barstow resident Bennett Warner was riding his bike westbound on Main Street around 12:53 pm Monday when he was approached by a man identified as 22-year old Raymundo Alberto Rodriguez-Cordova of Barstow.
The two men got into an argument, after which Warner rode into a parking lot on the 1000 block of Main. Cordova followed Warner in his pickup and accelerated into Warner, slamming him into a parked car.
Cordova fled the scene following the crash, leaving Warner to die later of his injuries.
There’s no word on what the two argued about, whether it had to do with road rage or a personal dispute between the two men.
Police are looking for an older model pickup, possibly a 1993 Chevy S10, black with red or primer markings on the front, Kansas plate 180GRS.
Anyone with information is urged to call Detective Tom Lewis at 760/255-5187.
This is the 22nd bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the third in San Bernardino County.
My deepest sympathy and prayers for Bennett Warner and all his loved ones.
Before we move on, let’s throw in a quick sponsored post from our friends Jon Riddle and Sarah Amelar, Co-Authors of Where to Bike Los Angeles.
Don’t let National Bike Month slip by without adding Where to Bike Los Angeles to your cycling library. It’s by far the best riding guide for LA by far and you can pick it up during the ongoing one-month sale — this May only — for less than twenty bucks a copy directly from the authors’ Amazon store.
Or as Tom Vanderbilt put it, a driver’s license is too easy to get, and too hard to lose.
Then there are the writers who just don’t get it. And seem damn proud of it.
A Davis columnist doesn’t seem to like the idea of an Idaho Stop Law, because, in his observations, virtually no one on a bike stops for a stop sign anyway, while every single driver comes to a full and complete stop. No, really, you can stop laughing now, that’s what he said.
Caught on video three: A bike-raging Toronto cyclist smashes the side mirror of an SUV, accusing the driver of laughing after nearly hitting him; a local advocacy group rightly condemns vigilantism while noting that something clearly led up to the incident.
The battle to reclaim Mosul from ISIS rebels has resulted in a unique bicycle culture, as cars and motorcycles are banned from moving in the west side of the city, and bikes are more practical in the rest.
An LA bike rider was harassed by the road raging occupants of a car, and intentionally doored by a passenger in the back seat.
Even though the door never made contact with him or his bike, this is a clear case of assault, since the passenger obviously intended to threaten, if not injure, the victim. As such, any case like this can and should be reported to the police — especially when there’s video evidence.
And yes, the cops do want to know about cases like this.
Even if the authorities aren’t able to press charges, it could establish a pattern of behavior if the driver or passengers do something like this again.
The video also provides strong evidence to make a case under LA’s cyclist anti-harassment ordinance, which entitles victims to $1000 or actual damages, whichever is higher, plus triple damages. As well as reimbursement for any legal fees.
It’s not easy to make a case under the law, since you have to have witnesses and/or corroborating evidence to prove the harassment occurred.
But with a video like this, it should do the trick.
After blocking a three-foot passing law in the state legislature, Montana Senate Leader Scott Sales plans to introduce legislation to ban bike riders from many state highways.
Sales’ legislation would prohibit bicycles from any two lane roadway with less than a three-foot shoulder, and require riders to place reflectors on their bodies as well as their bikes. And he’d require bicyclists to pay a special tax to ride on state roadways that they already pay for with their tax dollars.
His apparent distaste for bicycles and the people who ride them stems from his observation that bike riders are “some of the rudest and most self-centered people [he’s] ever encountered.”
Evidently, he’s never looked in the mirror, since he freely admits to blaring his horn at riders who have the audacity to get in his way. Or encountered many of the motorists he shares the roadways with, for that matter.
Meanwhile, a massive new study says bike riders aren’t really rude, we’re just trying to stay alive.
The state issued another $56 million in grants to fund 25 active transportation and Safe Routes to Schools projects in six SoCal Counties, including $15 million for bike lanes in the Arts District in DTLA, bike lane connections at Cal State Long Beach, and a bike track in Santa Ana.
A writer for City Watch calls CD1 challenger Joe Bray-Ali a ray of hope, saying “If Mr. Smith rode his bike to Washington, he’d look and sound a lot like Joe Bray-Ali.” We could find out today if Bray-Ali will be in a runoff with incumbent Gil Cedillo, when the latest vote counts are released.
According to the Santa Clarita Signal, sheriff’s deputies arrested a homeless man for riding his bike at night without lights, then says he was issued a citation. Something is seriously wrong if he was actually arrested, since riding without lights is a simple traffic violation, not a misdemeanor or felony offense subject to arrest. He should have been stopped, cited and sent on his way; let’s hope that’s what really happened. And someone please tell them it’s not that homeless people refuse to disclose their occupation; they usually just don’t have one.
Berkeley police say it wasn’t excessive speed or impairment that was responsible for the collision that killed a 78-year old bike rider last month, blaming poor lighting, rain and a wet roadway. Yet that would suggest a violation of the state’s basic speed law, which prohibits driving too fast for current conditions. Or is that only used as an excuse the ticket bike riders these days?
Defense attorneys argue that second degree murder charges should be dropped against the — allegedly — stoned driver who killed five Kalamazoo MI bicyclists because prosecutors failed to show that a combination of amphetamine, meth, hydrocodone and tramadol would have affected his ability to drive. On the other hand, they certainly didn’t improve it.
This is why people continue to die on the streets. A UK van driver was given a suspended sentence for running over a doored bicyclist who fell into his path — even though he fled the scene and was three times over the legal limit for drunk driving. His lawyer claimed he only started drinking after the wreck, though he was still drunk from the previous day. Seriously, that’s an excuse?
Chinese app-based bikeshare company Ofo has decided the way to get users to take better care of their bikes is to flood the streets with even more, so they know another bike will be readily available. Um, probably not.
Which means that if the totals stand as they are now, challenger Joe Bray-Ali will face Cedillo in the May 16th general election.
Of course, things could still change. There are more ballots to count, with the next update due on Friday.
And even if Bray-Ali does qualify for a runoff, it will be an uphill battle against the entrenched city hall establishment and massive piles of special interest money that inevitably flow in to support any LA incumbent.
The war on cars may be a myth, but the war on bikes is all too real.
A San Francisco driver punched a bike rider in the eye, knocking her off her bike and into traffic, for the crime of complaining that he was illegally stopped in a bike lane — even though there was nothing to his right and he could have easily pulled over to the curb.
A Ross CA man is charged with misdemeanor reckless driving after allegedly attempting to run a bike rider off the road, and threatening to come back with a shotgun and blow his head off. So evidently, the driver’s own words aren’t enough to prove he was threatening the rider.
Streetsblog asks when the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices, the overly conservative national guide to traffic signal, signs and pavement markings, will finally catch up to the 21st Century; they just got around to approving Bike Lane Ends signs. Even though American bike lanes have been ending — without warning in most cases — for 50 years.
A man is under arrest for breaking the window of a Pittsburgh bike shop and making off with a $4,000 mountain bike; he also threatened to shoot one of the arresting officers in the head and kill his family when he gets out of jail. Hopefully, that will be a very long time off.
Richard Masoner of Cyclelicious offers a review of bike-related legislation in the state legislature, including the possible elimination of the ride-to-the-right law we discussed yesterday, and an actual bipartisan bill to legalize the Idaho Stop — a term Masoner helped popularize — in California. The only thing more shocking than the Idaho Stop actually being considered in California is the concept of Democrats and Republicans actually working together to pass it.
A bill in the Iowa legislature would force drivers to change lanes to pass bike riders, while requiring bicyclists to use front and rear lights at all times — even in broad daylight — while a competing bill would require riders to display a slow-moving vehicle flag.
We can’t seem to get away from Malaysia this week.
The 22-year old driver who plowed into a group of Malaysian teenagers, killing eight and injured another eight, is reportedly traumatized by the experience. No matter how bad she feels, the victims’ families feel a hell of a lot worse.
Today’s common theme is traffic violence, both literal and figurative.
USC fans were heartbroken to learn that former running back Joe McKnight was the victim of an apparent road age shooting on the streets of New Orleans; a tragedy made possible, if not inevitable, by a proliferation of short-fused drivers with easy access to guns.
Which leads us to CiclaValley, who offers a bike cam compendium of drivers behaving badly. And yes, someone could easily compile similar video clips of scofflaw cyclists or pedestrians. But it’s the people in the multi-ton machines who pose the greatest risk to others by their bad behavior.
When cyclists break the law, they generally put themselves at risk. But when drivers break the law, it poses a danger to everyone on the street.
Or sleeping in their own homes.
Frequent contributor Erik Griswold notes that at the 30 second mark of its Metro Bike Instructional Video, Metro appears to tacitly encourage users to ride through flashing red lights.
The heavy-handed demands of the area’s wealthy homeowners have killed any semblance of vibrancy in Westwood Village, leading to streets filled with empty storefronts, and driving students — and their money — to other parts of the city. Like a scene out of Footloose, the city even prohibits dancing at restaurants and bars within the Village.
For the second time in two days, a San Diego area bike rider has suffered a serious head injury, apparently without a car involved. This time a helmeted rider fell in San Marcos and struck his head on the pavement; fortunately, his injuries are not life-threatening.
In typically obtuse government-ese, the US DOT announces it’s forming a 15-member committee to advise the Secretary of Transportation on matters related to transportation equity. Which sounds great until you consider that the incoming administration could dissolve it next month.
A small free library is unveiled as a memorial to a Wisconsin woman who was killed by a sidewalk-riding bicyclist. We can all agree this is a needless tragedy. But instead of fighting for higher fines to stop people from riding on the sidewalk, why not fight for safer streets so no one will feel the need to?
Horrifying story of an apparent road rage murder in Van Nuys.
According to the Daily News, the whole thing started when a bike rider hit a car’s windshield after the driver honked at him Sunday night. The driver responded by getting out of his car, only to get punched by the bicyclist, who then got into the other man’s car and drove off, as a passenger bailed out the right side.
When the driver tried to grab the door of the car as the bike rider was driving away, the rider responded by ramming the driver’s side of the car into parked cars, forcing him to let go.
The victim was taken to a local hospital, where he died.
The suspect was last seen driving away on Sepulveda Blvd in the victim’s car. He’s described as a Hispanic male approximately 20 to 30 years old, around 5’11” and between 140 and 160 pounds, wearing a dark-hooded sweatshirt and dark pants.
Anyone with information is urged to call Valley Bureau Homicide Detective Steve Castro at 818/374-1925.
A member of the Big Orange Cycling club suffered head, rib and back injuries when she was rear-ended in Rancho Palos Verdes on Sunday; witnesses report her shoes were still clipped into her pedals following the crash.
Caught on video too: The Sun insists hundreds of wheelie-popping London teens caused mayhem by riding through red lights and weaving through cars while on a ride to raise awareness for a cancer victim. Yes, they rode recklessly, but it’s quire a reach to describe the minimal disruption they appear to have caused as mayhem.
Come back later today when we’ll have a guest post from Mr. CiclaValley himself as he talks with Toluca Lake resident and pro cyclist Phil Gaimon about next weekend’s inaugural Malibu Gran Cookie Fondo.
This is who we share the roads with.
San Diego’s 10News reports a road raging driver intentionally knocked a local radio host off his bicycle as he was escorting a disabled cyclist on the Coast Highway in Carlsbad, just a few miles from the end of the Challenged Athletes Foundation’s 620-mile Million Dollar Challenge.
As the rider worked to make it up a small hill, an impatient driver began honking his horn, despite a support van warning cyclists were ahead. So KOGO host Bob “Sully” Sullivan rode back to explain that his riding partner was a paraplegic using a handcycle to get up the hill.
“‘We’ve gone 590 miles, give me 90 seconds, I’ll have him up and over this grade, you can be on your way,'” Sullivan said he told the man. “Completely agitated, he says to me, ‘I don’t care if it’s f-ing God up there. Get out of the f-ing road.'”
Sullivan said that’s when he stopped talking to the man and got back on his bike. The truck’s driver accelerated and hit Sullivan’s bike, causing him to fall to the roadway.
Yet despite the presence of an off-duty Carlsbad cop riding in the opposite direction, no charges have been filed.
“I think he needs to be arrested,” Sullivan said. “Somebody who purposely hits somebody on a bicycle using his car is either assault with a deadly weapon, attempted murder, at the very least shouldn’t be driving a car right now.”
The LACBC deserves a lot of credit for starting this conversation, even before Butler came on board, with its outreach to lower income immigrant communities in the last decade. Along with notable presentations at the National Bike Summit that marked the bike coalition as a national leader on the subject.
The Westwood Village Improvement Association discusses how to improve business and better serve the surrounding community. Oddly, making it safer to walk and bike there doesn’t seem to be an option, even though both would benefit the Village’s long suffering businesses.
Bike lawyer Bob Mionske writes about a new Close Call Database allowing bike riders to report punishment passes from angry motorists to establish a paper trail in case the driver does it again. Or worse.