From The Bicyclist Lawyer
On Saturday, October 15, 2016, at 5:31pm, K.B. and her fiancé were riding bikes in Littleton, near Bowles on the bike path, when they entered a crosswalk. K.B.’s fiance’s bike had a Burly attached, in which their 2-year old child was riding. K.B. was just behind, following her fiancé and their child in the crosswalk, on a green light/walking signal, with ample crossing time remaining on the digital signal. Without warning, K.B. was hit by a car.
The car was in the left-hand turn lane, with a green light. When it was clear, it accelerated into the crosswalk and t-boned K.B. on her bike. Notably in this case, another car that sat in the turn lane had its dash cam running, capturing the entire event. You can hear that driver anticipate what’s about to happen – yet, for some reason the turning motorist never noticed K.B. or her family on their bikes, until it was too late.
Dash cam footage (forward to 3min in…warning- it’s not easy to watch this):
The motorist was cited by Littleton P.D. for failure to yield right-of-way to pedestrian under violation code 802(1), which is a Class A Traffic Infraction. A summons was issued for the driver to appear in Littleton Municipal Court. We contacted the City Attorney (CA) ahead of time and implored her not to offer a plea deal in this case. Her proposal was to drop the charge to a defective vehicle charge. We asked that she not do that, given the factual situation, the video showing clear negligence (and failure to yield) by the motorist, the injuries K.B. suffered, and the very real fact that one or two seconds earlier, the car would’ve hit the Burly with the child instead.
Communication quickly broke down with the City Attorney, who insisted this is how her office “always handles cases like this.” I informed her that I would be sure to notify the cycling community that this is Littleton’s approach to these cycling crashes. (i.e., this blog, and honorable mention in my cycling education classes). The City Attorney then spoke with my client directly and criticized my professionalism. (Yes, you read that right). We appeared several times in Court; on one occasion appearing, only to learn the case had been rescheduled and no one had bothered to tell us…
Read the full article
Defective vehicle? More like reckless driving resulting in injury. Unbelievable. Is there an office of professional responsibility or a state bar committee that this can be raised with?
If the driver were drunk, they would most likely be in prison. What’s the difference between between drunk and negligent? This is horrifying.
The difference is not that they killed or maimed a vulnerable road user, but that they would have done it while drunk. The drunk park is what matters more than the person being hit.
AKA Car is king in ‘Murica
Gross and revolting. Backdoor deals that shut out the plaintiff, coming from the prosecution, that’s simply unbelievable and really showing the 2nd class citizen status of bicyclists in the eye of the police and the justice system. Even when that poor 8-year old girl was run over and killed by a stoner 19 year-old, the sentence amounted to peanuts. Kudos to Mrs. Hottman for fighting for wronged cyclists.
I hope Hitman rakes them over the coals in the civil suit. Maximize the payment from the insurance company and the driver.