Tag Archive for murder

No mask needed when you ride a bike, life behind bars for murder of bike-riding boy, and how a protected intersection works

Go ahead and leave you mask at home on your next bike ride.

If you’ve had your shots.

California and LA County are going along with new directives from the CDC, which conclude that masks are no longer necessary for people who’ve received both shots when you’re outside and away from crowds.

And they specifically call out bicycling as safe to do without a mask.

So feel free to breathe freely.

But maybe keep one handy in case you decide to go inside somewhere, or find yourself around people who may not have had their shots yet.

Just to be safe.

Photo by Yaroslav Danylchenko from Pexels.

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Kenneth Rasmuson was sentenced to life in prison without parole for the cold case murders of a couple of six-year old boys in the 1980s.

Jeffrey Vargo was riding his bike near his Anaheim Hills home when he was kidnapped and strangled by then 19-year old Rasmuson in 1981.

Five years later, Miguel Antero had just stepped off the school bus when Rasmuson grabbed him, and stabbed him multiple times.

The plea deal means the 59-year old Rasmuson will die in prison.

Which couldn’t happen to a more deserving guy.

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This is how a protected intersection works.

And no, I can’t seem to get rid of that top tweet, so just skip to the next one.

Thanks to Keith Johnson for the heads-up.

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A modern British remake of Vittorio De Sica’s classic Bicycle Thieves will premier on streaming platforms next week.

The Guardian likes it, but says it could be better.

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This is who we share the road with.

In a rant that will sound familiar to most bike riders, a road raging British driver complains that horses don’t belong on the roads, and uses his car as a weapon to attack a woman on a horse.

Although hardly anyone complains about bike riders pooping on the streets.

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Sometimes, it’s the people on two wheels behaving badly.

A Visalia man faces an attempted murder charge after stabbing another man in a dispute over a bicycle; fortunately, the victim’s injury wasn’t life-threatening.

A pair of Canadian burglars demonstrate that you can carry anything with a bike. Even a stolen safe.

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Local

Cities Today celebrates LA’s pre-pandemic 22% jump in bike ridership, which is likely to be even larger when the post-pandemic numbers finally come in. Hopefully, we won’t have to wait another two years to get a snapshot of current ridership, like we did last time.

Santa Clarita is hosting a self-guided community bike ride on May 15th.

This is how Vision Zero is supposed to work. Long Beach is considering a lane reduction and bike lanes on Spring Street through El Dorado Park, where five people have have been killed over the last nine years.

 

State

San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria will be the keynote speaker for the San Diego Bike Coalition’s virtual Bike Month kickoff on May 1st.

The San Diego Padres popular Pedal the Cause returns in a virtual format May 8th; over 1,200 people hav already registered, raising more than $700,000.

The executive director of the high successful San Francisco Bicycle Coalition is stepping down after five years.

Police in Roseville are looking for the pickup driver who stopped briefly after running down a man on a bike, then left the victim sprawled in the road with serious injuries.

 

National

Pink Bike asks bike shops how far ahead they’re scheduling bicycle tune-ups these days. And for the most part, the news ain’t good, but it’s better than last year.

C|net reviews Brompton’s ebike foldie, and isn’t thrilled. Never mind that the bike has already been recalled over a firmware problem.

Portland has waived an $11 million fine against the US government for blocking one of the nation’s busiest bike lanes for the better part of a year with a fence surrounding the federal courthouse, to protect it from protesters.

The bike boom goes on, as bike riding is up 20% over last year in Las Vegas.

American pro cycling pioneer and US Bicycling Hall of Famer Ron Kiefel is officially out of the bike business, after selling the Denver-area bike shop that’s been in his family for nearly 50 years.

Thieves take their time cleaning out the bike storage room at a Denver apartment complex, easily walking out with six bicycles. Another reminder that most storage rooms just offer bike thieves a more convenient place to shop for your bike.

A Border Patrol agent has been charged with the hit-and-run death of a 71-year old Texas man riding a bicycle; the crash occurred while he was off duty.

A Maine man had to relearn how to talk, walk, run and ride a bike after suffering a traumatic brain injury while mountain biking in Boise, Idaho. And may never know what happened to cause it. I can attest to that last part; it’s been over 13 years since the Infamous Beachfront Bee Incident, and I still have no memory whatsoever of the crash. And probably never will. 

New York police investigators have identified a suspect in the murder of a New York delivery rider, who was shot when he refused to hand over his ebike.

A Brooklyn city council candidate wanted to get to know his district, so he spent a month biking every block.

New Jersey bike advocates call for repealing laws that discourage bicycling, arguing that wheelies are not a crime, in the wake of the arrest of a Black teenager who refused to let a group of white cops confiscate his bike.

A Philadelphia mystery shopper tries out the city’s bikeshare system, concluding it’s an easy and efficient way to get around town, despite problems with maintenance.

Pennsylvania’s Bensalem Township faces intense criticism online after police announced plans to create a web portal to report scofflaw children and teens on bicycles. And deservedly so.

Someone please tell the Virginia State Police and WWBT-12 that someone can be a pedestrian, or riding a bike. But not both at once.

Orlando, Florida’s new director of the transportation department envisions giving the traditionally auto-centric city a bike and pedestrian friendly makeover. So if they can do it, why the hell can’t Los Angeles?

 

International

Presenting the five best bike paths for your net trip to Winnipeg, Canada.

Saskatoon city leaders approve plans for a bike lane, but choose to protect parking spaces over trees to make room for it.

Now you, too, can own a piece of crowdsourced European bikeshare provider Donkey Republic, which is preparing for an IPO on the Dutch stock exchange.

Germany is investing more funds in bicycling than ever before, with just under 1.5 billion euros — the equivalent of $1.81 billion — committed to bikes through 2023.

A nightmare scenario from Spain, where a bicyclist may have died of anaphylactic shock after inadvertently swallowing a bee and getting stung in the throat while on a group ride.

The container ship Ever Given may have been freed from the Suez Canal, but your new bike may still be stuck in Egypt because the ship and its cargo are being held as ransom until the company forks over $900 million in damages.

No surprise here, as children’s bike injuries shot up 42.7% in Western Australia during the pandemic, with more kids at home and on their bikes.

 

Competitive Cycling

Bicycling’s Joe Lindsey argues that UCI, bike racing’s parent organization, is risking a PR nightmare by continuing to punish riders for using the supertuck position. As usual, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you.

 

Finally…

That feeling when the headline says advocates battle Sharks over parking and safe streets, but it has nothing to with a Sharknado. That feeling when you go from rock star dreams to a real life bike lock star on Shark Tank.

And never let a little thing like a bike race get in the way of your bike commute.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask

And get vaccinated, already.

Murder charge for intentionally killing Port Hueneme teen, San Diego hit-and-run victim ID’d, and bike riders behaving badly

More on the murder of a teenage Port Hueneme boy riding his bike.

Twenty-eight-year old Samuel Matthew Rocha faces one count of murder and four counts of attempted murder for intentionally plowing his car through a group of teen bike riders.

The attack came just ten minutes after he assaulted a couple at an Oxnard laundromat, and hit an employee with his car as he fled the parking lot.

His 16-year old victim has still not been publicly identified.

Rocha is being held without bail pending a June court hearing. Hopefully he’ll spend the rest of his life there.

Sadly, that wasn’t the only murder of a bike rider last week.

A Chowchilla man faces homicide charges for the DUI hit-and-run death of a man riding a bike, after telling police investigators he “intentionally wanted to kill someone.”

Let’s hope that one goes away for a very long time, too.

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Bike Portland identifies the victim critically injured in a San Diego hit-and-run last week as a former Portland woman.

Seattle resident Lindsay Caron suffered life-threatening injuries when she was run down from behind on Ingraham Street in Pacific Beach last Monday; she’s currently in a medically induced coma.

A friend has started a Facebook support group for her.

Anyone with information is urged to call San Diego PD’s traffic division at 858-495-7805, or Crime Stoppers at 888-580-8477.

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Call it a snapshot of LA bike history from 1983, apparently taken back before the city was colorized.

Thanks to Megan Lynch for the heads-up.

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A Scottish advocacy movement calls for fighting climate change by making the country bike-friendly.

Make that the world, and we might actually still be here this time next century.

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Well, that’s certainly a horse of a different color. And a couple of cranksets.

Thanks to Ted Faber for the forward.

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Good question.

GCN examines how a bicycle can cost the equivalent of nearly $14,000.

They also have advice for big and tall bike riders on how to get the most out of your bicycle.

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

No bias here. An Aussie sports talk station complains about the “absurd” reason a pop-up bike lane has been declared a success after nearly doubling the rate of women on bicycles, while a business person blames the bike lanes, not the pandemic, for business being off last year.

Sometimes, it’s the people on two wheels behaving badly.

A beloved Santa Barbara street performer suffered a broken wrist and cuts on his hand when he was knocked to the ground while playing his guitar by a thief who stole his tips before fleeing on a bicycle.

An Arkansas man got five years for a pair of drug cases, as well as riding his old bike into a Walmart and riding out with a new one while claiming it was okay because he was a police officer. He isn’t, and it wasn’t.

Greensboro NC drivers complain about a bike rider who was allegedly weaving in and out of traffic, blocking and hitting cars while harassing their drivers; police were unable to find him after getting a single complaint.

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Local

In news that would have been unbelievable just a few years ago, the former Biking Black Hole of Beverly Hills adopts Complete Streets as a “high-level concept,” though just what that will mean on the streets will need to be fleshed out. Thanks to Keith Johnson for the link.

 

State

California police organizations teamed with the ACLU to gut proposals for automated speed enforcement to help keep our roads deadly. SB 735, which called for legalizing speed cams in school zones, was amended to death, while AB 550, which would allow speed cams in high crash zones, survives for now, albeit in a reduced form.

Grab your bike for a 13-mile self-guided scavenger hunt through Solana Beach next month.

A pair of Santa Barbara residents complain about the city’s recently approved Westside bike lane project, arguing that it will create a traffic nightmare in their Eastside neighborhood.

A Palo Alto writer says bike routes should be safe routes, but too often aren’t.

 

National

Nice to see the national GOP fighting for the rights of drivers to use their cars as weapons to run over any protesters that happen to get in their way. Because evidently, there’s just not enough traffic violence in American politics.

Brompton is recalling its ebikes in the US to fix a bug that can keep the e-assist going even when you’re not pedaling.

A writer for Outside sings the praises of the humble handlebar bag.

Road Bike Action lists nine essential skills every bike rider needs to master. Actually, some of these only apply to roadies, and only if you plan to ride in a group. Unless maybe you plan to bump cruiser bike riders on the beach bike path.

Portland takes a whimsical approach to bike lane markers.

A Billings, Montana writer discusses the joys of early season bike riding in Yellowstone National Park, as long as you dress in layers and watch out for bison, goose and elk poop.

Wannabe bike thieves drove a truck into the front of a Denver ebike shop, causing $100,000 in damages to the store and bicycles, without getting away with anything.

An op-ed from an Iowa paper says bike licensing laws are rarely enforced, but can lead to over policing, as we saw in New Jersey last week.

A Texas father complains that the drunk driver who killed his bike-riding son may escape jail time, due to a plea deal in the works.

After initially cancelling their annual Christmas bike giveaway, Fayetteville, Arkansas’ Bicycle Man organization donated 1,000 bikes to local kids; the group has given away over 27,000 bicycles since starting in a couple’s backyard 31 years ago.

This is why people keep dying on our streets. A Kentucky man faces a DUI charge in Wisconsin after he was found sleeping in his car with the engine running; this is his fifth DUI in four different states. The law has to be changed to make drunk and drugged driving offenses follow drivers from state to state, so they can’t escape prosecution for multiple violations.

Chicago students honored a military family by giving their kids new bicycles.

No surprise here, as a New Jersey professor says that Black and brown bike riders too often bear the brunt of police enforcement, with minor traffic violations used as a pretext to stop and interrogate them. Meanwhile, Bloomberg examines the problem of racial profiling and discriminatory enforcement of bike registration laws.

Florida clarifies its three-foot passing law to say drivers must pass at a safe distance of at least three feet, or safely follow a bike rider or pedestrian until they can.

 

International

Bicycling says Baja is a mountain biking paradise, and one of bicycling’s best kept secrets. As usual, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you.

A folding military bicycle has come home to Canada, nearly 80 years after a Canadian soldier gave it to a French boy after landing in Normandy, who passed it down to his daughter.

Crossdressing British comedian Eddie Izzard is one of us.

Bikes can take you anywhere. Even to the cemetery of a 920-year old Northumbrian church, where the father of the UK’s National Health Service rests, along with a leading WWII-era British Nazi and, briefly, half of his best-selling author son.

An Indian man discusses watching the liberalization of Calcutta from the seat of his bike, as well as using it for collective ganja runs in college.

Bikeshare comes to Jerusalem, with 120 ebikes and 80 standard bikes at 25 stations across the city. Let’s hope that’s just a start, because 200 bike won’t go very far.

Dubai police stop a company worker for carrying the equivalent of nearly $275,000 on his bicycle in a plastic bag, insisting he put himself at risk of robbery by not transporting it in a car. Because people in cars never get robbed, right?

Even Nairobi is outstripping Los Angeles, with plans to invest 1.47 billion Kenyan shillings in new bikeways and walkways outside of the city center, although that converts to just $13.5 million. But as Stormin’ Norman points out in forwarding the story, the average Kenyan consumes just 2% of the resources of the average American, so that figure is a lot higher in context.

A writer for Outside says no, you probably can’t Everest Mt. Everest, because of that whole certain death thing.

 

Competitive Cycling

Slovenian Tour de France champ Tadej Pogačar claimed his first one-day classic by out-sprinting world champion Julian Alaphilippe to win Liege-Bastogne-Liege on Sunday. Meanwhile, Dutch cyclist Demi Vollering sprinted past Annemiek van Vleuten to win the women’s race.

Like father — and grandfather and uncle — like son, as an Irish man takes up the family tradition as an Olympic hopeful cyclist, while his brother goes his own way as a pro soccer player.

 

Finally…

As long as you’re riding across the country, might as well stop for a half-marathon along the way. Is that a pruning saw in your pocket, or are you just happy to be riding your bike?

And why walk down the aisle when you can ride in style?

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Thanks to John H and Megan L for their generous, and unexpected, donations to help support this site, and keep SoCal’s best bike news coming your way every day. 

Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask

Pasadena driver faces murder charge, LADOT proposes bike lane-free Lincoln Blvd, and protected parking lanes in DTLA

This is who we share the road with.

Police arrested 36-year old Anthony Marcus Houston on murder and reckless driving charges for a Pasadena crash last December.

He’s accused of blowing through a red light at twice the posted speed limit, and slamming into a car driven by 49-year old Pasadena resident Juanita Lucinda Johnson, killing her and injuring three other people.

Houston, who has a lengthy criminal record dating back to his teens, had been wanted since an arrest warrant was issued last month.

He also faces charges for assaulting and threatening two people earlier this month.

It’s just too bad that’s what it seems to take to get prosecutors to take traffic crimes seriously.

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LADOT wants your opinion on proposed changes to Lincoln Blvd south of Santa Monica.

None of which involves building a bike lane.

Then again, it’s not like even a “protected” bike lane means much in the City of Angels these days.

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This is what could be happening in Los Angeles.

But isn’t.

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

A driver jumped out of his car and tried to fight a woman riding her bike in New York.

Something that happens too damned often, and for no good reason.

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Local

Los Angeles has received a $30.7 million grant for transportation projects in the Canoga Park area, including protected bike lanes on Owensmouth Avenue and Sherman Way, and a protected connection between the Orange Line and the LA River bike path.

 

State

A teenage Indio bike rider was hospitalized with moderate injuries after getting struck by a driver Wednesday evening.

The Santa Barbara city council voted unanimously to build the new crosstown Sola Street bicycle boulevard, over loud objections from the city’s Historic Landmarks Commission, who somehow felt traffic diverters would destroy the historic ambiance of the Mission District.

Northern California’s Caltrain is installing new bike lockers at most stations, available on a first come, first served basis for just five cents an hour.

This is who we share the road with, too. Police are looking for a Santa Rosa man who deliberately slammed his car into a homeless camp, injuring a man he’d been arguing with and killing nearby a woman; he’ll face murder and attempted murder charges once he’s arrested.

 

National

Men’s Journal offers their picks for the best bike helmets to keep your head in one piece, however you ride. Although you can protect your head just as well for a fraction of the cost of some of their choices.

Cycling Weekly recommends clothing and accessories for on or off your bike.

A new online bicycling community promises to bring together cycling content, resources, perks and discounts into a single resource, with annual memberships starting at just $10.

A former Portland bike shop owner is urging his erstwhile peers to band together to support an industry climate change declaration. Seriously, bicycles could — and should — be one of the most important tools in fighting climate change, yet the industry has done virtually nothing to encourage it.

In an extreme example of failing to share the trail, a Washington hiker stabbed a mountain biker who asked his group to move over so he could get by. Predictably, both sides disagree on whose fault it was.

Residents of College Station, Texas rally around an 81-year old lawyer after someone stole the beat-up cruiser bike he’d ridden to work every day for the last 12 years.

Minneapolis introduces new artistically designed bike racks. Although I suspect most bike riders are more concerned with keeping their bike safe than how whimsical the rack is.

New York is poised to make a big move by shifting responsibility for crash investigations from the NYPD to the city’s department of transportation, although the police would still be responsible for any criminal investigation that results. However, that raises questions over the need to hire and train hundreds of crash investigators for a department that has never investigated anything more serious than a parking violation.

As California considers legalizing speed cams, New Yorkers voice overwhelming support for automated traffic enforcement, with 78% of New York City voters approving, along with 73% of motorists.

A New York Streetsblog op-ed argues for the role bike co-ops play in promoting equity on the city’s streets, enabling cash strapped people to get a good bike without falling into the trap of dysfunctional used bikes or low quality mass market bicycles.

Speaking of Streetsblog, they note that booming bike use means there’s now an average of just 1.9 cars for every bike on New York’s Second Avenue, yet drivers get roughly 12 times the space.

There’s a special place in hell for anyone who could flee the scene after killing a 10-year old boy riding his bike; a 27-year old Georgia woman faces a charge of vehicular homicide.

 

International

The bikewear market took a nosedive last year, dropping 25% despite the bike boom.

An Edinburgh bus driver is out of work after colliding with a drunken bike rider; he was fired for reckless conduct, even though police cleared him of misconduct.

An 84-year old Limerick, Ireland woman beamed when she was given a new bicycle by the kindhearted owner of a local bike shop, after he discovered the bike she rides around the city was too far gone to be repaired.

A group of around 20 Singapore bicyclists are accused of hogging the road — not to mention violating Covid protocols — even though they courteously moved out of the driver’s way after he honked.

 

Competitive Cycling

Leading French newspaper Le Parisien reports next month’s single-day Paris-Roubaix, aka the Hell of the North, has been postponed until fall due to the pandemic; it comes after last year’s race was postponed, before being cancelled.

Bicycling hops into the Wayback Machine for a look back at the pioneering women bicyclists who forced their way into the sport, paving the way for today’s women’s cyclists. As usual, you can read it on Yahoo if Bicycling blocks you.

 

Finally…

If you’re going to ride your bike through a closed Burger King drive-thru looking for change, with an open beer in hand, maybe leave the meth pipe at home. Florida police are looking for an electric bicycle thief; no word on whether he runs on a cord or batteries.

And yes, please.

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Be safe, and stay healthy. And wear a mask

1 killed and five injured in horrific Portland SUV attack, and LA/Long Beach motocross legend dies mountain biking

Let’s go with a slightly truncated post today.

I’ve been struggling with a bad internet connection all night, thanks to a rapidly failing router. 

So I’m going to post this while I still have a connection, and we’ll catch up with the rest of the news tomorrow after I — hopefully — get this damn thing replaced. 

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Horrific story from Portland, where a driver careened down more than 12 city blocks, intentionally slamming into everyone in sight.

This is how the Portland Oregonian described the attack.

Tyler Meyer, 30, said he saw the SUV swerve into his lane on Belmont Street, then strike a cyclist as he turned sharply onto 30th Avenue. Meyer said the suspect, who was speeding and running red lights, then clipped a pedestrian at Stark Street and 15th Avenue, did a U-turn and smashed into two people who became wedged between the SUV and a retaining wall at Stark and 19th Avenue. The driver then ran into an elderly woman on 19th, before doubling back and striking another pedestrian, Meyer said.

One woman in her 70s was killed, while five other people suffered non-life-threatening injuries.

Larry Wolfe said he had an appointment to meet the person who was killed, a woman in her 70s, at the corner of Washington Street and 19th Avenue. Wolfe told The Oregonian/OregonLive he saw the woman get hit by a car and scream. He said he started walking toward her, then saw the car come back and hit her again. The car then did a U-turn and dragged the woman for some time, Wolfe said.

The male driver attempted to flee on foot after crashing his SUV, but was soon corralled by bystanders who kept him from leaving until police could wrestle him to the ground.

Meyer said he also watched the driver run into the El Camino. He said the man attempted to fight bystanders and threw potted plants from nearby homes.

“I told him, ‘I think you just killed a lady up the street,’” Meyer said. “He laughed and said, ‘Ah, that’s too bad.’”

There’s no word yet on whether this was a terrorist attack, a case of mental illness or if there was some other reason for his murderous attack.

But it serves as yet another reminder that we trust anyone who can pass a simple test with operating a two-ton weapon capable of inflicting mass casualties.

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Sad news, as motocross legend Mike “Too Tall” Bell died over the weekend.

The 63-year old Los Angeles native and Hall of Fame member, who rode out of Long Beach, reportedly suffered a heart attack while mountain biking; no word on where it happened.

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While Los Angeles is stuck in reverse, Pomona and Claremont are moving forward to improve safety for everyone.

And holding on to some of that water we’ll be flushing out to sea this week.

Sometimes, it’s the people on two wheels behaving badly.  

A Marin horseback rider complains about “irresponsible aggressive mountain bikers…fueled by a combination of righteousness, adrenaline and anger” after a woman was seriously injured when she was apparently thrown off her horse in some sort of conflict a mountain biker.

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Local

LAist takes a deep dive into the heartbreaking death of a four-year old girl killed in a collision while walking with her mother in Koreatown in 2019, and the continuing failure of Los Angeles officials to curb traffic violence. And why over a hundred pedestrians die in the city every year.

 

State

Alameda is getting its first fully protected, Dutch-style intersection. Which is one more than LA has.

Santa Rosa is proposing a redesign of a killer roadway, improving crosswalks and adding new bike paths and curb extensions to a half mile stretch where three people on foot or bicycles were killed in a single week in 2018. Which raises the question of what the hell were they waiting for? Something like that should have fixed within months, not years.

 

National

Bicycling picks up a paywalled story from Popular Mechanics — which is also available on Yahoo in case Bicycling’s paywall blocks you out— about how riding a backward bike, which goes left when you turn right and vice versa, will break your mind. So seriously, what’s the point of all those paywalls if you can get it for free, anyway?

A pair of Connecticut men take the long way across the US, riding 5,000 mile through 18 states along the way. On the other hand, a Florida man plans to ride solo 11,500 miles around the perimeter of the US to raise funds for a cancer charity. Although as we’ve seen before, planning to do something isn’t the same as doing it.

New York bike riders could see more protected bike lanes, despite the pandemic, as the transportation department emerges relatively unscathed from the city’s budget crisis.

The sponsor of Virginia’s wide-ranging bicycle safety bill says it should pass easily, saying he doesn’t expect any opposition to allowing bike riders to treat stops as yields, and requiring drivers to change lanes to pass someone on a bicycle. Evidently Virginia’s AAA and state police don’t have their heads so far up their don’t have the windshield bias of their California counterparts.

 

International

Cycling News explains everything you need to know about ebike motors before you buy your next bike.

Yes, please. Scotland will now give people living near designated Low Emission Zones the equivalent of more than $1300 in grants to buy a bicycle or ebike, or to use towards public transportation.

Bike Radar looks at the top five road bike trends for the coming year.

Fixie riders in Singapore will now need at least one brake on their bike.

McDonalds is finally taking steps to welcome people on bicycles — in the Philippines, anyway.

Speaking of the Philippines, the country voted to approve a network of popup bike lanes and “safe emergency pathways” for non-motorized vehicles, which could be made permanent.

 

Finally…

Actually, the best Peloton alternative remains riding your bike outside. When you’re riding with four outstanding warrants, marijuana, meth, Dextroamphetamine Clonazepam on your bike, put some damn lights on your bike.

And anyone who can turn car parts into a bicycle deserves an A+.

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

Commission approves Wolfberg park, NIMBYs fight Culver City Complete Streets, and racist road rage murder

Let’s start with a followup to yesterday’s proposal to name the new Potrero Canyon Park for longtime bike and community advocate George Wolfberg, who fought for its creation before his death last year.

This update came from his son, David Wolfberg, who followed in his father’s footsteps as a bike advocate and longtime member of the Los Angeles Bicycle Advisory Committee, in a comment to yesterday’s post.

Thank you Ted for the highlight. It appears to be a go for the park naming. The Parks Commission was wonderful and importantly now includes one of the city’s greatest bike and community advocates, Tarafai Bayne. Many people and agencies have contributed mightily to the development of the park, notably David Card of the Pacific Palisades Community Council and the Bureau of Engineering. Commissioner Nicole Chase expressed a desire for the parks named after engaged citizens like my father George to have detailed reliefs that tell us more about that community member. All of L.A.’s parks are accessible via bicycle though some require more effort than others. My father envisioned connecting the park to the historic Marvin Braude bike path via a bridge over PCH. That is a big spend and they are working to locate funding for it. In the meantime I’ve suggested waypoint signs and/or safety warnings as we definitely don’t want to see anyone trying to cross PCH to get to the park. There are two tunnels south of the park and a crossing signal at Temescal for safe crossing. They are aiming for a park opening in 2021.

He also added this note about the TikTok video of the Peloton instructor that concluded yesterday’s post.

Regarding the hilarious and disturbing Peloton instructor, that is Caitlin Reilly who also recently lost her father, actor John Reilly of General Hospital. Caitlin has several characters developed in lockdown who are poignantly funny reminders of the time in which we’re living. She is an incisive observer and many of these clips are unmistakably “L.A.” https://www.tiktok.com/@itscaitlinhello?

George Wolfberg photo from Pacific Palisades Community Council.

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That didn’t take long.

Just days after Culver City’s new Complete Streets plan went online, some people are already gearing up to fight against livable streets and a healthier business community.

In other words, exactly the same sort of streets people fly to other cities to enjoy, but fight like hell to keep out of their own neighborhoods.

But if they bothered to get informed, like the flier calls for, it would only take a simple Google search to learn that bikeable, walkable Complete Streets can reduce congestion by getting people out of their cars, significantly boost retail and restaurant sales, and bring new life to car-choked streets.

And that any increase in traffic to neighborhoods can be easily mitigated with simple traffic control measures.

They might also learn that once a project like this goes in, the same people who once fought it will often fight to keep it.

Instead, Culver City is seeing the same knee-jerk opposition to change that we’ve seen repeated throughout the LA area, with varying degrees of success.

Which mans it’s probably only a matter of time before we see a new Keep Culver City Moving chapter.

Flier photo courtesy of Zennon Ulyate-Crow.

This is who we share the road with.

A Boston area man was killed in a racially charged road rage attack when the Black and Latino victim and his white attacker got out of their cars to argue.

Then the killer got back in his car and deliberately slammed into the victim.

And yes, the accused killer driver, 54-year old Dean Kapsalis, was arrested after turning himself in half an hour later.

Although the current charges don’t begin the meet the seriousness of the crime, because anything less than second degree murder would be a travesty.

As if the racist murder wasn’t bad enough, though, Henry Tapia, better known as Henny, a 35-year old father of three, was also one of us.

In a reflection if just how tragic this death is, that crowdfunding page mentioned above has raised nearly $75,000 in just the first day, far exceeding the modest $10,000 goal.

But no matter how much money it raises, it won’t bring Henny back.

And in yet another example of government officials keeping a dangerous driver on the road until it’s too late, the killer had an extensive record of crashes and traffic violations.

It’s just too bad drivers don’t have to pass a test to root out racism before we trust them multi-ton weapons.

Thanks to Erik Griswold for the heads-up.

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Sadly, this tweet from Oklahoma speaks for itself.

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More proof that bikes are good for business.

It’s worth the click to read the brief thread about how an interest in bicycles helped turn around a dying business.

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

No bias here. A San Clemente ebike rider says the city needs to clamp down on everyone else, insisting ebike-riding “kids and elders” are going to kill someone.

But sometimes, it’s the people on two wheels behaving badly.  

The New York SUV driver who was terrorized by a group of teen bicyclists after allegedly brake checking one of them — intentionally or otherwise — says nothing has been done by the city and he’s still too afraid to drive his car, despite charges against one of the boys.

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Local

According to the Pasadena Complete Streets Coalition, Northwest Pasadena deserves better than the recently released proposal to remake North Lake Avenue, which the organization says would remain an incomplete street that violates the city’s commitment to Vision Zero.

 

State

Momentum is finally building for a 24-acre bike park in Alpine in East San Diego County.

This is why people continue to die on our streets. A Bakersfield man was allowed to plead no contest to a single hit-and-run charge in the death of a bike rider, despite driving with a suspended license — and despite changing his appearance and pushing his SUV into a ravine to cover up the crime.

Sad news from Merced, where a bike rider was killed in a hit-and-run Monday night; police busted the driver after tracking down his heavily damaged car.

He gets it. A bike-riding Manteca columnist says instead of calling wheelie-popping teen bicyclists hoodlums who a terrorizing the populace, be glad they’re taking up bicycling and burning off a little energy.

 

National

Yet another kit promises to convert your bicycle to an ebike.

A Minnesota town proposes a road diet and roundabouts to improve safety, but after a 13-year old boy was killed riding his bike to school last year. Maybe cities could make safety changes they know are necessary before it’s too late for a change.

Seriously? A Cape Cod community wants to make sure they don’t sacrifice the town’s character to Complete Streets. Because apparently, its character is somehow tied to car-clogged streets.

A secret government report shows New York never had any intention to put bike lanes on the Verrazzano Bridge, despite holding several public meetings, and only floated an expensive, impracticable plan in order to kill it.

In an effort to become one of the safest states for bicycling, Virginia moves forward with a bill that would require drivers to change lanes to pass someone on a bicycle, allow bike riders to treat stop signs as yields, and let bicyclists ride two abreast.

This is the cost of traffic violence. The family of a North Carolina man killed in a hit-and-run while riding his bike last year say the arrest of the driver brings them little comfort because it can’t bring the victim back.

A North Carolina school bus driver could use remedial training after nearly hitting an SUV head on while passing a bike rider with full load of kids.

 

International

Just weeks after officials tore out a protected bike lane in London’s tony Kensington and Chelsea boroughs, a bike rider was injured hitting one car in an effort to avoid another.

The UK’s rash of violent strong-arm bike thefts goes on, after an 18-year old bike rider was knocked off his bicycle by a thief who rode off with his bike.

 

Competitive Cycling

He gets it. Longtime pro André Greipel says he feels privileged to race in the middle of a pandemic, and the other riders in the pro peloton should, too.

 

Finally…

Nothing like a little blood and guts to get your kid to wear a helmet. Always look under your saddle before you ride.

And this has got to be the best bikeshare ad ever.

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We have another person who prefers to remain anonymous to thank for yet another generous donation to help bring SoCal’s best bike news and advocacy to your screen every morning. And yes, even though our annual fund drive is over, donations are always welcome and appreciated!

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

Update: Man riding bike killed by carjacker in horrific DTLA hit-and-run crash; victim was on his way to join a group ride

This time, it really is murder.

A 46-year old bike rider is dead, the innocent victim of a speeding carjacker trying to make his escape through Downtown Los Angeles Saturday morning.

Now police are looking for the car thief and killer, who simply walked away after a second crash.

According to KABC-7, the series of events started when a passing pedestrian asked a newspaper delivery driver for a ride on the 900 block of Wilshire Blvd. When the driver refused, the man jumped into the running pickup while the man was stocking a newsstand.

A flier from the LAPD places the time of the theft as 7:50 am.

Unable to get back into the truck, the delivery driver jumped into the back as the man sped off towards DTLA, then wisely jumped out a few blocks later, tumbling to the ground.

Witnesses saw the carjacker careening through the streets, weaving from side to side at a high rate of speed while driving on the wrong side of the roadway.

After turning onto eastbound 7th Street, he slammed into a man who was riding east just before 7th and Olive Street.

However, according to the police flier, the victim riding against traffic in the westbound bike lane — which means the driver rear-ended him while all the way on wrong side of the street.

The victim landed on the hood of the truck, and was carried nearly 100 feet before being thrown off, then tumbled another 150 feet before coming to a rest at Hill Street, a full block from where he was hit.

KTLA-5 reports friends of the victim identified him as Branden Finley, a member of the Ride for Black Lives group; he was reportedly on his way to join a group ride when he was killed.

Paramedics attempted without luck to revive him, before declaring Finley dead at the scene.

Meanwhile, the driver continued east on 7th until he crashed into a pair of vehicles and took off on foot, melting away on the Downtown streets.

Bizarrely, he was walking barefoot and carrying a steering wheel, presumably from the truck he stole.

He was described as a Black man around 5 foot 6 inches tall and 150 to 160 pounds, and may have suffered a head injury from hitting his head on the windshield.

The suspect was last seen wearing a white hoodie and black pants, after removing the blue hoodie he was originally wearing.

As always, there is a standing $50,000 reward for any fatal hit-and-run in the City of Los Angeles.

Anyone with information is urged to contact LAPD Detective Juan Campos at 213/833-3713, or e-mail hm at 31480@lapd.online. During weekends and off-hours, call 1-877/527-3247.

This is at least the fifth bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the first that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County and the City of LA.

Three of those deaths have been the result of hit-and-runs.

Update: The LA County coroner has confirmed the victim’s identity as Branden Finley, a 46-year old father of two.

“I still don’t even think it’s real. I feel like it’s a dream. Right now, it’s a nightmare, and I feel tomorrow I’m going to wake up and this day will never exist,” his daughter, Koi Finley, told ABC7.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Branden Finley and his loved ones. 

Murder charge in stoned death of autistic bike rider, call for expanded Metro funding, and keep cars out of SaMo bike lanes

It’s Day 13 of the 6th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive!

Thanks to Trinh D and David D for their generous support for SoCal’s best source for bike news and advocacy! 

It only takes a few clicks to donate and help keep all the best bike news and advocacy coming your way every day!

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Long Beach resident Richard Lavalle was charged with second-degree murder in the DUI death of 12-year old bike rider Noel Bascon in Costa Mesa Sunday evening.

The boy, who suffered from autism, was riding with his father in a crosswalk when Lavalle allegedly ran a stop sign while driving stoned.

Lavalle is being held without bail, and faces up to 30-years behind bars if he’s convicted.

He could also be charged with a third strike after robbery convictions in 2009 and 2018, which could result in a possible life sentence.

The murder charge results from a Watson Advisement following a 2013 conviction for driving under the influence in San Diego County, stating Lavalle could be charged with murder if he killed someone while driving under the influence in the future. Otherwise, he would have faced a manslaughter charge.

His passenger, Lee Anna Murphy, has yet to be charged despite being found in possession of illegal drugs and paraphernalia.

A crowdfunding account to help pay Bascon’s funeral expenses has raised over $17,000 in just one day, topping the original $10,000 goal.

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Thirty LA-area organizations are calling for expanded eligibly of Metro funding currently dedicated for highways.

https://twitter.com/ActiveSGV/status/1336399149403541510

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No, Santa Monica’s new two-way protected bike lane isn’t for cars.

Even if their owners assume they own all the road.

https://twitter.com/abikeist/status/1336529892746297344

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Here’s your chance to weigh in on transportation issues in South LA.

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Local

Just say “bikes mean business” to get a discount on a deep dish pizza at Masa of Echo Park this Thursday; the last time the deal was offered, it drew over 200 bicyclists.

A new masterplan for LA’s Exposition Park calls for improved access for bike riders and pedestrians, possibly including protected bike lanes.

Tis the season. Hats off to the Pasadena Rotary for donating 146 bikes to local kidsThanks to Tim Rutt for the heads-up.

 

State

A coalition of California advocacy groups are calling for the next chair of the state senate’s influential Transportation Committee to be a climate champion who understands the importance of investing in transit and active transportation.

It was a bad weekend in Fresno, where a 73-year old woman was killed riding her bike after allegedly veering onto the wrong side of the road.

Also from Fresno, a man riding a bicycle was stabbed several times and had his phone stolen by several people who got out of a passing car to attack him; fortunately, he’s expected to survive.

And police aren’t sure why a 42-year old Fresno man was shot multiple times and killed while riding his bicycle.

 

National

They get it. CNBC reports the coronavirus pandemic has spurred a bike boom but most American cities are far from ready for it.

Gear Patrol looks at the latest bikes and accessories as proof of the unstoppable cycle of innovation.

A writer for Fast Company says joining the ebike revolution made this year a lot more tolerable.

Legendary bikemaker Gary Fisher, who literally helped invent mountain biking, is out with a new autobiography.

Road Bike Action Magazine offers tips on how to buy your next roadie.

After his stolen bike was recovered, a bighearted Washington boy gave it to a young fire victim because he’d already gotten a new one.

A Texas bike shop suffered a $10,000 loss when thieves smashed the storefront with a U-Haul and made off with five bikes.

Chicago considers the local community by ensuring a new bike bridge conforms with ancient Jewish law.

An Ohio town filed charges against a driver who killed a 7-year old boy riding his bike in a crosswalk last month, one day after a Cleveland newspaper reported they were illegally withholding details of the crash.

The pandemic forced an annual Massachusetts fundraising ride to go virtual this year, and still managed to raise $50 million for cancer treatment and research.

Horrible story from Flushing NY, where a teenager was talking with a man outside a restaurant when a second man came up from behind and slashed him in the face, before the first man ran off with his bicycle and cellphone.

‘Tis the season, too. Two hundred New Jersey kids got new Huffy bikes courtesy of former Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Ron Jaworski.

 

International

Heartbreaking story from Toronto, where family members mourn a 23-year old woman who was killed riding her bike home to her college apartment.

An Ontario, Canada woman is headed back to jail to serve the remainder of her sentence for killing a bike rider while driving drunk, after the admitted alcoholic violated her parole with yet another DUI conviction.

An American expat living in England was killed when the brakes failed on his ebike during a steep descent while riding with his wife.

Britain’s Cyclist magazine looks at their favorite lightweight bikes of 2020.

They get it. The authors of an op-ed in the prestigious BMJ — the former British Medical Journal — say free parking for healthcare workers just forces them to drive, instead of using healthier, and more sustainable and affordable means. 

You’ve got to be kidding. Life really is cheap in the UK, where a drunk driver walked with a suspended sentence, despite dragging a bike rider who heroically tried to stop his car, while driving at three times the legal limit.

After a Milan bookshop owner was forced to close, he took to his cargo bike to peddle his tomes.

 

Competitive Cycling

Bicycling’s Joe Lindsey takes a difficult in-depth look at pro cycling’s diversity problems in a nearly all-white sport. As usual, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling’s site blocks you out.

Former NBA All Star Reggie Miller joined the board of USA Cycling; the passionate bicyclist was one of four new members named to the board of the organization governing bike racing in the US.

Southern California’s Coryn Rivera is looking forward to next year’s Tokyo Olympics and the World Championships in Flanders, as well as joining a newly formed women’s WorldTour team, after a year marred by injury and illness.

Cyclist profiles surprise Giro winner Tao Geoghegan Hart and his climb to pro cycling’s top ranks.

 

Finally…

That feeling when Andy Griffith holds a lifelong a grudge against you for knocking him off his bike. Traveling the world on a Penny Farthing.

And be glad you avoided the great British bicycle stock bubble of the 1890s.

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

Update: 12-year boy killed riding with dad in Costa Mesa crash; driver arrested for murder and DUI, as well as parole violation

Some things are just too sad for words.

Like the death of a 12-year old boy who was just out for a bike ride with his dad.

And murdered by an intoxicated driver who was somehow entrusted to operate a deadly machine.

Okay, allegedly intoxicated.

According to the Daily Pilot, Noel Bascon was riding in a crosswalk with his father near the Costa Mesa skate park around 5:55 Sunday night, when he was run down by the driver of a rented pickup truck.

A witness began CPR before police officers responding to the crash took over until paramedics arrived. But despite their efforts, he was pronounced dead at a nearby hospital.

A news release from the Costa Mesa Police Department places the crash near Junipero and Arlington Drives.

Fifty-nine-year old Long Beach resident Richard Lavalle was driving east on Arlington when he reportedly ran a stop sign, throwing Baskin several feet through the air.

Despite being under the influence — again, allegedly — and on parole, Lavalle remained at the scene.

He was booked on charges of murder and DUI, as well as a parole violation.

The murder charge suggests that Lavalle has a previous conviction for driving under the influence, and signed a Watson Advisement warning that he could be charged with murder if he killed someone while driving drunk or stoned in the future.

His passenger, 56-year old Artesia resident Lee Anna Diaz Murphy, was booked on possession of controlled substances and possession of unlawful paraphernalia.

Anyone with information is urged to call Costa Mesa Traffic Investigator Kha Bao at 714/754-5264.

This is at least the 63rd bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 17th that I’m aware of in Orange County.

Update: Lavalle is being held without bail after he was charged with second-degree murder, and faces up to 30-years behind bars if he’s convicted.

My News LA confirms he was driving while stoned, and did receive a Watson Advisement following a 2013 conviction for driving under the influence in San Diego County; otherwise, he would have faced a manslaughter charge. 

He could also be charged with a third strike after robbery convictions in 2009 and 2018, which could mean a possible life sentence. 

His passenger, Lee Anna Murphy, has yet to be charged despite being found in possession of illegal drugs and paraphernalia. 

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Noel Bascom and all his loved ones. 

Thanks to Lois for the heads-up. 

LACBC and Streets for All virtual holiday events, big jump in distracted driving, and bust made in Venice bike theft death

Welcome to Week Two of the 6th Annual BikinginLA Holiday Fund Drive!

Thanks to John C for his generous donation to help keep SoCal’s best source for bike news and advocacy coming to your favorite screen every morning! 

If you haven’t already, take a few minutes right now to join him in supporting this site!

Seriously, don’t make me beg.

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The LACBC will host their free virtual holiday party and potluck this Thursday.

You can register for the event and purchase raffle tickets here.

Meanwhile, Streets for All will host a virtual happy hour this Wednesday to chat with Hayes Davenport, host of the LA Podcast and an advisor to new LA Councilmember Nithya Raman.

He also has the perfect old Hollywood name right out of Central Casting.

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No surprise here, as Streetsblog announces distracted driving has skyrocketed during the pandemic.

Something anyone who’s spent much time riding or walking the streets can attest to.

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Culver City 311 announces that police have apparently re-arrested the bike thief who killed a 73-year old man while trying to wrestle his bicycle from his grasp; the victim died when he fell and hit his head hit the pavement.

Let’s hope his killer faces the murder charge he so richly deserves.

Thanks to Ted Faber for the heads-up.

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The Hollywood Hills West Neighborhood Council is looking for a few good men or women; we need to get more bike and pedestrian advocates on the council so we can finally see some positive changes around here.

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In a special shoutout to former pro Phil Gaimon, here’s the LA Times’ tips for making the best holiday cookies.

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

A Montana man pled guilty to booby trapping a popular forrest trail with a nail-spiked board hidden under debris to discourage mountain bikers from using the trail; instead it seriously injured a father walking with his kids.

An Aussie man admits outside court that his idiotic stunt of pushing a shopping cart into a pack of bicyclists riding at speed after a 12-hour bender could have gotten someone killed.

Gee, ya think?

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Local

Angelenos are once again being told to stay home to avoid spreading the coronavirus; the order specifically prohibits travel by “foot, bicycle, scooter, motorcycle, car or public transit,” though there are countless exceptions, and debate over whether they really mean it.

 

State

Bad news from the Central Coast, where a bike rider was killed in a collision with a driver on the 101 Freeway in Arroyo Grande. Naturally, initial reports blamed the victim.

San Luis Obispo’s new active transportation plan commits to completing 100% of the city’s 52 highest priority bike and pedestrian projects within the next ten years — even though 93.5% of the projects are still outstanding. As Los Angeles bike riders can attest, though, a promise like that is only as good as the city’s willingness to live up to it.

More bad news from Tracy, where a 73-year old man was killed in a collision while riding his bike; police immediately blamed the victim for wearing dark clothes and riding without lights after dark, as well as not using a crosswalk to cross the roadway — even though bicyclists aren’t required or even expected to.

Still more bad news, this time from Lake County, where another 73-year old man was killed by a hit-and-run driver as he was riding his bike; the CHP caught the driver several hours later after she abandoned her car at a nearby hotel.

 

National

Gear Junkie looks at the best fat bikes for the coming year.

America’s last remaining Tour de France winner is back in the bike business with a new line of ebikes.

Police in Lincoln NE busted three men, including a 16-year old boy, accused of getting out of their car to mug a 69-year old bike rider and steal his belongings.

Wisconsin’s only Black-owned book store is currently doing business on the back of a big blue tricycle. As usual, read it on Yahoo if Bicycling’s site blocks you out.

Sad news from Philadelphia, where a local community is mourning the death of a long-time neighborhood bike cop from Covid-19.

Life is cheap in Louisiana, where a man got two years home detention for fleeing the scene after slamming his SUV into two kids sharing a bike; fortunately, both recovered after suffering serious injuries.

Florida has completed a study for a bike trail along the state’s coast highway south of Jacksonville where retired ABC News correspondent Tim O’Brien was killed while riding his bike, but it hasn’t been funded.

 

International

Road.cc offers a holiday gift guide for awkward cycling fans, most of which is surprisingly affordable.

Cycling News turns the tables on yesterday’s men’s gift guide for bicyclists with a guide for bike-riding women. Because evidently, men don’t use bike tires or CO2 inflators.

An Ontario, Canada woman reached out to other female mountain bike riders three years ago to form a new group; she now has a network of over 100 active riders.

A Toronto letter writer complains that the city spend $240,000 to build, then remove, a protected bike lane, and concludes that building bike lanes that will be used just “four or five months out of the year” is insanity. Who knew Canadians are that afraid of a little cold weather?

Over 300 Montreal residents complained about bike paths and pedestrian streets that popped up in the city during the pandemic. Which means the other roughly 4,220,700 people in the metro area didn’t.

A British writer takes a 1,307-mile bikepacking trip across the entire length of the UK. Which may be the only place Brits can go once Brexit kicks in at the end of the year.

A Hungarian man is all smiles after riding over 8,000 miles from Hungary to India, despite four weeks in a Pakistani jail when he tried to cross the border.

 

Competitive Cycling

Mountain bike downhill legend Rachel Atherton welcomes the pandemic bike boom, saying everyone has finally discovered what she already knew about bikes.

Eleven of the biggest names in women’s cycling are calling it a career, including American Katie Hall.

Cycling scion Axel Merckx, who ought to know, warns today’s top young cyclists not to burn out too early.

 

Finally…

Don’t ride your ebike like a motorcycle. Who needs the power company when you’ve got a bicycle?

And introducing a thousand dollar full carbon balance bike for the weight weenie toddler in your life.

No, seriously.

Photo from Specialized’s website.

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

Man killed struggling with Venice bike thief, Whittier hit-and-run driver jailed, and driver busted for South LA hit-and-run

We’ve got a lot of ground to cover after missing the final two days of last week.

Thanks for your patience while I dealt with a seemingly endless string of medical tests and exams, which is finally drawing to a close today, just in time for tomorrow’s Election Day. 

So let’s get right to it. 

And remember, if it society devolves into complete and utter chaos after the polls close, a bicycle is your best way of bugging hell out of here.

Wherever here happens to be. 

Today’s photo comes courtesy of David Drexler, who spotted this bike wheel table in a high-end WeHo furniture store. 

Just in case anyone has me on their Secret Santa list after this is all over. 

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Just horrible.

A 73-year old man is dead after a struggle with a Venice bike thief.

The victim, who has not been publicly identified, was standing with his bike on the corner of Victoria Ave and Beethoven Street around 1:45 pm Wednesday, when a man identified as 33-year old Dylan Brumley tried to wrestle the bicycle out of his grasp.

The victim fell to the ground as he clung to his bike, hitting his head on the pavement; he died at a hospital early Saturday morning.

Brumley only held his ill-gotten prize half an hour before he was busted by sheriff’s deputies.

No word on what he’s charged with. But murder sounds good to me.

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We may finally see justice for a Whittier bike rider, nearly three years after he was killed in a hit-and-run.

Andrea Dorothy Chan Reyes was arrested in Australia and extradited to the US for allegedly fleeing the scene after killing Agustin Rodriguez Jr. in January, 2018.

Rodriguez was dragged nearly the length of three football fields under his killer’s car.

Investigators located Reyes’ car in Idaho, with other evidence found in Las Vegas. The FBI tracked her first to Hong Kong, before she moved on to Australia.

She faces felony counts of hit-and-run resulting in death and vehicular manslaughter; charges will likely be added for fleeing the country.

Thanks to John Damman and my friends at Mumford Brewing, as well as an anonymous source, for the heads-up.

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In yet another fatal hit-and-run, Moises Iscaya was busted three months after fleeing the scene when he allegedly killed Jose Guerra, as Guerra rode his bike with his daughters in South LA.

Iscaya reportedly slammed into Guerra’s bike while traveling at a high rate of speed, taking his life in full view of his two young daughters, who may never get over the emotional and psychological trauma.

He’s currently being held on $2 million bail.

Which sounds about right.

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Let’s keep our fingers crossed for a bike rider who was struck by a semi driver in Hacienda Heights Thursday afternoon.

The victim, who has not been publicly identified, was taken to a hospital in undisclosed condition.

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Remarkably, a bike rider jumped back up after going over the roof of a car whose driver was doing donuts during the impromptu Dodgers World Series celebration in DTLA Tuesday night.

Needless to say, the driver didn’t bother to stick around afterwards.

Here’s another view.

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If you had a bike stolen near Tilt Coffee in DTLA recently, you may be in luck.

Thanks to Jojo for the tip.

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Old Pacific Highway will be closed through Camp Pendleton during daylight hours this week, from 7 am to 6 pm; bicycles are allowed on the shoulder of I-5 during the closure.

Thanks to Robert Leone for forwarding the news.

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Take a moment to voice your support for protected bike lanes on San Vicente Blvd in the Pico neighborhood.

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You can now officially bike from the Baldwin Hills Parklands to the beach at Playa Vista, on LA County’s newly completed 13-mile Park to Playa Trail, connecting to numerous parks and recreation areas along the way.

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Mountain bike legend Gary Fisher says we should all check out his son’s El Prado bar in Echo Park.

And thankfully, it has take out service.

Because after tomorrow, we’re all going to need it.

Thanks to David Huntsman for the forward.

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Speaking of Huntsman, he found a Jack O’Lantern that must be absolutely terrifying to many LA drivers.

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A reminder to Bike the Vote, if you haven’t already.

Although I maintained tradition and Corgied the Vote, as usual.

But cast my vote for the most bike-friendly candidate on this year’s ballot.

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Add a little gravel to one of SoCal’s most iconic climbs.

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The worst ways to end a bike ride.

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Sometimes, it’s the people on two wheels behaving badly.

There’s not a pit deep enough for the Seattle man who dragged a cat behind his bike for an unknown distance; police took the cat to a local vet, and threw the schmuck behind bars.

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Local

Good news, as Bike Index is now the official bicycle registration partner of the LAPD.

A Lancaster bike safety program is urging school students to See and Be Seen. Because that’s so much cheaper than actually building safer streets.

Kate Hudson is one of us, as is her dad Kurt Russell, as they go for a ride through LA along with her longtime boyfriend.

Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins is one of us, going for a mountain bike ride in Calabasas (scroll down…keep scrolling…no, further…).

 

State

The San Diego Union-Tribune profiles the San Diego Bicycle Coalition’s Oliver Zuniga, saying the San Diego man is using his passion for bikes to make bicycling more inclusive and accessible. Thanks again to Robert Leone.

A Temecula man was booked for DUI after slamming into a 13-year old boy riding a bicycle, leaving him with non-life-threatening injuries.

Sad news from Santa Cruz, where a 48-year old man was killed after apparently losing control of his bike and getting hit by a pair of drivers.

San Francisco bike riders are understandably up in arms over the removal of a raised bike lane from plans for a revised Market Street, due to budget cuts resulting from the coronavirus pandemic.

 

National

PeopleforBikes offers tips on how to keep biking throughout the fall.

Bloomberg examines whether bikes can keep booming post-coronavirus.

Short bicyclists can ride big wheels on the trails, too.

Writing for Outside, a bike-riding woman describes what it’s like to hit someone on a bicycle with your car.

Bike lawyer Bob Mionske considers when you should ride with daytime lights, concluding it’s better to just use them all the time. And reminds us that a lack of lights at night will be used against you in the event of a collision.

The victim who was killed when she was pushed off her bike in Las Vegas last week was remembered for her kindness; the man who killed her fell to his death, while the driver of the van is being held without bail. Her husband called it “an unnecessary tragedy that was 100% avoidable;” Michelle “Shelli” Weissman had just started riding a bike during the pandemic. Thanks to Steve Hansen and John McBrearty for the links.

After some coldhearted schmuck stole a trailer containing 18 bikes and helmets used by students at a Colorado middle school, the community pitched in to replace them — donating nearly 50 bicycles and helmets to the school.

A Colorado man is facing a pair of vehicular homicide charges for the hit-and-run death of a man riding a bicycle. The 18-year old driver was allegedly drunk and stoned on weed, speeding, weaving in and out of traffic, and driving on the shoulder when he slammed into the victim.

A Texas man spent nearly two months riding over 3,000 miles around the perimeter of the state.

My new hero. An Ohio fourth grader rode his bike in the rain to pick up a curbside lunch for his brothers and sisters.

He gets it. A Brooklyn prosecutor says it’s time for cops to stop blaming the victims in fatal crashes.

Angry DC residents protested when a mo-ped scooter rider was killed in a collision while he was being chased by police for…wait for it…not wearing a helmet. Seriously.

This is the cost of traffic violence. A hit-and-run driver took the life of a prominent Ohio criminal defense attorney as he was riding his bike.

A South Carolina bikemaker says only automation can bring factories back to the US.

There’s a special place in hell for whoever pulled a gun on a 13-year old Mississippi boy to steal his bike; fortunately, an outpouring of community support ensured he got a new one.

 

International

Bike Radar considers just how green bicycling really is, determining it compares favorably to walking, transit and cars, and ebikes are even better.

A London bike rider lost control while riding with no hands, flipping over a parked motorscooter, then getting up and riding off as an angry delivery chased after him on the damaged scooter.

A London bicyclist was awarded the equivalent of nearly $64,000 after suffering permanent brain damage going over the handlebars when a dog ran in front of his bike.

Carfree neighborhoods are the surprising new frontline in the UK’s culture wars.

That’s more like it. A British appeals court added the equivalent of a $23,000 fine after concluding that a driver got off way too easy for crashing into two bike riders while driving at four times the legal alcohol limit.

A new Dutch study concludes that ebike riders are no more likely to suffer serious injuries than people on regular bicycles.

Wall Street is suddenly in love with bicycling, as Germany’s 30-year old Canyon cashes in.

An eye-raising Indian government report says bicycle riders killed 195 pedestrians last year; traffic safety experts say not so fast.

Seniors in India’s Goa state are pedaling their way to better health.

 

Competitive Cycling

Irish cyclist Sam Bennett had his victory in the Vuelta’s ninth stage stripped after he was relegated when helicopter footage showed him repeatedly body checking another rider; Bennett said anyone who races would understand his actions.

Next year’s Vuelta will be the first bike race to actually start inside a cathedral.

No surprise here, as the first major bike race of the 2021 season has been cancelled; the Tour Down Under hopes to roll again in 2022.

The former Dirty Kanzaa gravel race has rebranded itself as Gravel Unbound, after the belated realization that the name was slur against a Kansas Native American tribe.

 

Finally…

When you specialize in using loopholes to get guilty drivers off the hook, maybe you’re not the best authority on how bicyclists should ride. Your next bike helmet could be one big solar cell to power your electronic devices.

And no. Just…no.

………

Thanks once again to Matthew R for his very generous monthly donation, which is very appreciated. 

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

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