Fatal car-bicycle accident closes Lefthand Canyon Drive

Looks like Christopher Loven has had issues with cyclists before. Here is an article form June of 2009:

BOULDER, Colo. — A Boulder County man accused of accosting a bicyclist in a weekend road-rage incident has been ticketed on suspicion of reckless endangerment.

The ticket, a class-three misdemeanor, alleges that Chris Loven created a “substantial risk of bodily injury to another person” by nearly forcing a cyclist into oncoming traffic. The charge is punishable by fines ranging from $50 to $750, and a maximum of six months in jail.

The incident that led to the ticket happened about 6 p.m. Saturday near the intersection of Lee Hill Drive and Olde Stage Road. Loven said he came upon a cyclist in the middle of the road who refused to move over and then punched his truck after a verbal confrontation.

The cyclist claims Loven was driving aggressively. Sheriff’s officials said a witness to the incident claimed Loven, not the cyclist, was the aggressor.

Loven, 43, will appear in a Boulder courtroom late next month. On Wednesday, he said he plans to fight the charge.

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From the Daily Camera:

Fatal car-bicycle accident closes Lefthand Canyon Drive

By Erica Meltzer, Camera Staff Writer
Posted: 06/17/2011 12:24:57 PM MDT

Colorado state troopers are investigating a fatal accident involving a car and a bicycle in Lefthand Canyon.

Boulder County sheriff's dispatchers said Colorado State Patrol will be handling the investigation.

Trooper Heather Cobler said the accident occurred at Lefthand Canyon and Lee Hill drives just after noon. She said she believed the victim was the cyclist, but hadn't yet confirmed that.

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32 Comments

Tough Intersection

I was almost hit by a car pulling out and turning left from Old Stage, onto Left-Hand Canyon road. I was descending down the road, and the driver (elderly couple) did not notice me. One lesson learned, when I near that intersection, I slow down, in order to both give myself and vehicles time for all of us to react properly.

Not sure if there is a connection between the two stories (in terms of somehow indicting the driver as trying to run down the cyclist). However, if the driver was heading up Left Hand canyon, and given that he was likely stopped before turning onto Old Stage, I would speculate that the trailer behind the truck was hidden from the view of the cyclist, and the cyclist perhaps was timing his decent to pass around the back of the truck (only to realize too late that there was an additional trailer behind the truck).

However, given the history of the driver, it seems to me that this needs further investigation to determine whether the driver took on a more aggressive approach, and turned in front of the cyclist with the attitude of "hey - I am the bigger vehicle, who do you think owns this road" which so often permeates many drivers in this country.

Was this guy was hell bent on killing someone ?

Several years ago I was riding east from the summit on Lee Hill Rd and this same guy tried to run me off the road. Believe me when I tell you that I was barely able to avoid him running me over. His dump truck said "Power Earth " on the door. I Did some research and learned he lived right at the top of Lee Hill Rd. Then a month or so later, Jim Mohan and Hugh Walton were attacked by this same guy on Valmont Rd. near the new bike park.
So now he has killed someone. He'll probably get community service, a fine, and probation. This may have been less of an accident than the DA will be able to determine.

Correct me if I'm wrong. The

Correct me if I'm wrong. The truck was coming up lefthand and turning left onto Old Stage, the rider was descending lefthand. If this is correct wouldn't the rider always have right-of-way? The driver would have to be at fault in this collision. Involuntary manslaughter at the very least, although the likelihood is that it was voluntary given his history of altercations with cyclists.

I think you have the

I think you have the accident scene correctly visualized. The driver will have the burden of proof trying and prove themselves innocent. What is the speed limit on Lefthand? I think it's 35mph. I doubt Eugene was going faster than that. Looking at the size of his road bike frame I have a hard time believing that Eugene was hard to see. My feeling is inattentive driver kills cyclist.

Loven was only charged in

Loven was only charged in the first case b/c a witness corroborated the rider's story. Tragically, the DA doesn't even have the cyclist's side of the story this time, much less a witness.

In this case, Loven and/or his attorney will say he didn't "see" the cyclist, and call it a terrible "accident." I wouldn't be surprised if no charges are filed.

Pattern of aggressive behavior

It is the time for Chris and others to come together and present their eyewitness accounts of being threatened by this driver. The DA will only be able pursue more serious charges if they have a documented clear pattern. The DA will have the 2009 incident, but the others must now come forward.

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