As expected, Wendy Villegas was sentenced to three years and eight months in an overly generous plea deal for the drunken hit-and-run death of Andy Garcia that left two other riders seriously injured, and robbed his fiancé of both her heart and future.
Yes, justice may have been served. But the time does not begin to suit the crime.
Especially for a driver who left Garcia laying in the road to be run over by a second vehicle, and was reportedly still drunk when she was arrested the next morning.
Had she stopped after the collision, it’s likely that the van that followed might have seen her and her victims, and managed to stop in time to avoid them. And Andy Garcia might — might — still be alive today.
We’ll never know.
Meanwhile, the judge made it clear that if Villegas did it again after she’s released, she’d face a minimum 15-years for murder.
So let’s get this clear.
You have to get drunk and kill a second person before the legal system takes it seriously. But you get a virtual pass on the first one.
Even if you don’t show any sign of giving a rat’s ass that you took the life of another human being, and shattered countless others.
Good to know.
If that pisses you off as much as it does me, join Damian Kevitt on Sunday as he finishes the ride interrupted by a hit-and-run driver last year.
A preliminary hearing reveals 18-year old Sommer Gonzales had failed two drug tests while on probation for undisclosed crimes. And yet somehow, she was still allowed on the road to kill 21-year old cyclist Joe Robinson while driving under the influence.
Gonzales has additional court hearings scheduled for May 19th and June 6th.
Turns out there was a real Italian-obsessed, bike prodigy, Little 500-winning inspiration for the Dave Stoller character in Breaking Away, the movie that inspired my own lifelong obsession with bicycling. And Steve Tesich, who won an Academy Award for the screenplay, was his teammate in the winning race.
On the other hand, it looks like the hometown Cutters team was fictional, dammit. Although in a case of life imitating art, one was formed in response to the movie.
Streetsblog’s Joe Linton looks at the city’s Second Year bike lane implementation list, offering the kind of detailed analysis only he can. And says there’s more low-hanging fruit out there, despite official denials.
Flying Pigeon looks at the real victims of Councilmember Gil Cedillo’s inaction on Figueroa bike lanes, and calls on riders to Bike the Vote for Saturday’s Neighborhood Council elections.
A new petition calls for passage of AB 1922 to promote California greenways, particularly along the LA River.
Another reminder that Kidical Mass is coming to Santa Monica on Saturday. Meanwhile, the Annenberg Community Beach House along SaMo’s beachfront bike path celebrates its fifth anniversary this weekend; bike valet will be provided.
The Daily Pilot says don’t force OC cyclists onto dangerous Jamboree Road — ban cars from the Back Bay Drive, instead. I like the way they think.
Orange County cities are urged to compete for new funding for bike and pedestrian projects, while OCTA officials argue that bikes aren’t just for recreation. Thanks to Nick Gerda for the heads-up.
An HIV positive hemophiliac cyclist is setting of from Newport Beach on his third cross-country ride to raise funds for people with bleeding disorders.
A Sacramento man uses his bike to bypass heavy traffic from a major highway repair project.
Train for your next — or first — century in just seven weeks. Probably a better approach than my first century, which came when I misread a map and rode about 60 miles further than I intended.
The Alliance for Biking and Walking looks back at the National Open Streets Summit held recently in Los Angeles. And check out their great GIF from the Wilshire CicLAvia.
A Las Vegas cyclist learns the hard way that bike riders have to stop for emergency vehicles, too.
Detroit isn’t the exclusively auto-centric hellhole it used to be.
The body of an upstate New York man has been found nearly four years after he disappeared while riding his bike.
The NYPD says screw you to owners of impounded bikes, including the family of a fallen cyclist.
One of two surviving ex-Beatles rides a rental bike. The cute one. The Beatle, not the bike.
London’s transport authority apologizes after a driver cuts off a cyclist and calls him a knob; I know a lot of cyclists who’ve complained to LA’s Metro, but none who ever got a mea culpa in return.
A road raging UK motorist is given 10 months in jail and called a danger to cyclists after knocking a rider off his bike because they were riding two abreast. He also loses his license for three years.
Behavioral Science could help motorists drive more safely around bike riders. Maybe it could help them decide if this is a pill or a 90 mph bicycle.
Even Abu Dhabi is getting a new walking and cycling master plan.
A Sydney paper lists the world’s top 10 bicycling cities. Shocked! Shocked! I am that not a single US city made the list.
Chicago doctor declares fast cyclists unfit for military service due to “bicycle heart.” In 1898.
And repeat after me. If you’re riding your bike at 5 am with five outstanding warrants while carrying meth and a Billy club, put a damn light on it already. The bike that is, not the Billy club.