Yet Another PCH Fatality...Hit and Run Driver Not Cited

Discussion in 'Rider Down' started by DM Rides, Jun 18, 2014.

  1. DM Rides

    DM Rides Bruise Bunny

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    http://ktla.com/2014/06/18/cyclist-...ch-collision-driver-questioned-but-not-cited/

    A 19-year-old motorist who fatally struck a cyclist inLaguna Beach initially fled the scene but was later detained nearby andquestioned by police, who did not cite him, authorities said Wednesday.


    Emergency dispatchers received 911 calls reporting acrash between a white Toyota Prius and a bicyclist on North Coast Highway atEmerald Bay (map) justbefore 7 p.m. Tuesday.

    The cyclist —identified later as John Greg Colvin, a 55-year-old from Laguna Beach— diedless than five hours after being transported from the scene, according to anews release issued Wednesday by the Laguna Beach Police Department.



    The cyclist and the Prius were both northbound when thevehicle, traveling in the No. 2 lane, hit the cyclist, who was on the rightside of the roadway, “for an unknown reason,” the release stated.

    After thecollision, the Prius fled northbound on Coast Highway, police said in therelease.
    The motoristthen stopped in the parking lot of an elementary school about 1 mile away,callers told police, who took him into custody.

    The Prius had asmashed windshield and a dented hood, video from the scene showed.
    Video from thescene showed Colvin’s bicycle in the right shoulder, which ends on the northside of Emerald Bay.

    North CoastHighway does not a have a bike lane at Emerald Bay, according to street-viewimages from Google Maps.

    The19-year-olddriver was taken to the Police Department to be interviewed, but he was notarrested or cited. His name was not being released, police said.

    The driver wasa resident of Laguna Beach, police Sgt. Eric Lee said Tuesday night.


    Colvin was taken initially to Hoag Hospital in NewportBeach then was transported to Western Medical Center in Santa Ana, where hedied about 11:30 p.m.


    The collision remained under investigation.


    KTLA’sNidia Becerra Tijerino contributed to this article.

     
  2. socal_eric

    socal_eric New Member

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    Sad to hear but something doesn't add up with the info about the driver not being cited and released. Hopefully they're just ticking the boxes and making sure they have their ducks in a row before filing charges and prosecuting. Accidents do happen, but when you have a broken windshield I'd assume you know dang well you hit someone and should stop to render aid.
     
  3. bing!

    bing! Active Member

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    Saving the planet in a Prius, but won't stop after running over another human being. SMH.
     
  4. dstepper

    dstepper Over the hill

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    It was reported that he drove to a safe spot in the road to get out of traffic and then called. If you know that section of road that time of the day the sun is shinning directly into your eyes an very easy to not see a rider. He is 19, many 19 year olds don't make good judgment calls but he self reported as soon as a safe spot off the highway (El Moro Elementary School), so I don't believe hit and run charges are in order. I lived in close to that section of road for 20 years and it sees many accidents. A real bike lane with a solid barrier between cars and bikes is what it needs...until then we will have more problems on that section. Very sad case and these stories happen way too often.

    Yes we get angry and want people in jail, my best guess that after talking to the 19 year old our reaction may be different. Personally I may rather be the one hit and killed than the one to carry that burden of killing someone around.
     
  5. herzalot

    herzalot Well-Known Member

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    I am sooooooo frustrated by the carnage on our roads. There but for the grace of God go we, as driver or cyclist. Truly awful and heart wrenching. Godspeed John! May your family find a way to cope with their loss, and the 19 year old find a way to cope with what he's done.

    FU#K!
     
  6. Winger

    Winger Member

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    John was part of my regular mountain biking group and I'm honored to have known him. He was one of the nicest guys out there who genuinely took an interest in people. We never really knew who was going to show up for rides, but when I'd see him pull up in his prius I knew it was going to be a great day.

    He was a natural athlete who was into triathalons and did at least 1 big one a year. He could be off the bike for 2 months and *say* he was out of shape and then still destroy us all up the hill. Humble. An all around great guy. Man, I'm going to miss him.
     
  7. jae2460

    jae2460 Active Member

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    I am so sorry to hear this. RIP John. Thoughts to your family and friends.
     
  8. bing!

    bing! Active Member

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    I wasn't there and I don't know what happened. I am only second guessing at this point. If I hit a pedestrian, and I have, I will immediately assist the victim. Assist as in directing traffic away from the victim, securing said victim, calling for emergency personnel, report the situation to assist emergency personnel, and provide first aid if possible.

    The perp may not have meant any ill will, but leaving an injured person lying on the road I just hit to protect my own hide isn't me.

    I am really sorry to hear of another cyclist fatality. Prayers and sympathies to the victim sent.
     
  9. Kriller134

    Kriller134 Member

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    while I agree with you Bing, I do feel for the kid. He's just that, a 19 year old kid. He was probably freaking out.
     
  10. db.mx

    db.mx Member

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    This one hit really close to home. I'm in China right now and my wife started texting me about it late last night. Turns out, he is a very close friend of a friend of ours family. Simply tragic and it's sad that this keeps happening.

    This comes a few days after one of my best friends hit a car that turned out in front of him at the Ride around Big Bear. He was doing around 30 when a car turned out and he had no where to go. He got through it with only minor injuries (scrapes, minor concussion, and some stitches) and we have all been talking about how lucky he was since then.

    RIP John. You'll be missed.
     
  11. ericfoltz

    ericfoltz Active Member

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    Sorry Dean but there is no excuse for this kid.

    First off, the driver was not the person who called the police. He was followed by a couple in a car who saw him hit the cyclist and keep going. The couple called the police and reported his location. There was plenty of room between the incident (right next to the Emerald Bay entrance) and the elementary school almost a mile away where he ultimately stopped for him to have pulled over. Based on the damage to his car, it would be hard to believe he didn't know what had happened.

    CVC 20001.

    (a) The driver of any vehicle involved in an accident resulting in injury to any person, other than himself or herself, or in the death of any person shall immediately stop the vehicle at the scene of the accident and shall fulfill the requirements of Sections 20003 and 20004.

    (b) (1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), any person who violates subdivision (a) shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison, or in a county jail for not more than one year, or by a fine of not less than one thousand dollars ($1,000) nor more than ten thousand dollars ($10,000), or by both that imprisonment and fine.

    The unsafe condition caused by the sun is the same as any other case of limited visibility. You slow to a speed that allows you to proceed safely. Just like if there was fog, a dust storm or any other condition of limited visibility. If your vision was impaired to the point that you could not see a cyclist in the bike lane and you hit them in the bike lane, you were driving too fast for the conditions at the time.

    Without getting into a debate about proper punishment, it needs to be remembered that driving is a privilege, not a right. This kid has shown that he cannot responsibly operate a motor vehicle and at the very least should have that privilege revoked.

    He has also deprived the world of a father, husband, brother, son, uncle, friend and human being who just happened to be a cyclist. Actions have consequences. The idea that you can kill another human being and walk away without any punishment other than "having to live with it" because you claim it was an accident is just wrong.

    Here is a good article that says it better than I can: http://www.vice.com/read/you-can-ki...-dont-really-mean-it?utm_source=vicetwitterus

    Orange County average 13 cyclist deaths involving motor vehicles per year. We are already at 10 this year. We have had at least 4 on PCH in the last 18 months. I was hit in Laguna Beach last year pretty close to where this incident occurred. The driver took off but I was able to get his license plate. I reported to LBPD and haven't heard a word from them about an arrest.

    The problem is that by not prosecuting these cases, we reinforce the idea that there are no consequences for hitting a cyclist. The difference being that this is not a case of a fender bender. It is someones life.
     
  12. kcm

    kcm New Member

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    If we excused every teenager for their actions just because they're teenagers, we would have a lot more deaths. Appropriate punishment yes. Just walking away because he was young and it was an accident? No. He should not be able to drive in the future. Make him ride bikes instead. Prayers for John and his family.
     
  13. dstepper

    dstepper Over the hill

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    For the past 21 years daily been in Criminal Courts regrettably having to deal directly with families on both sides of these types of tragedies...most often due to DUI's. Mitigating circumstance are a form of excuse but in all fairness need to be considered before a rush to judgment. None of us where there, none of us can into the kids head. The closest to the event are the Police that talk to witnesses and are trained to analyze the scene and they did not file charges.

    I doubt he is a sociopath that woke up in the AM and decide to go run some one over. If I was the 19 year old I would gladly go to jail if it lifted the live long burden of what I did but it doesn't. The solution is something that will never happen in the USA and that is a large biking culture with dedicated bike routes that don't share the road with cars.
     
  14. ScottV

    ScottV .

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    Very sorry to hear about this. RIP John.
     
  15. suicidesam

    suicidesam New Member

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    By seeing the pic of the Prius definitely hit and run...driver is probably the son of a high ranking official. Involuntary manslaughter
     
  16. socal_eric

    socal_eric New Member

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    I've got quite a few friends in law enforcement and hear stories all the time about how they don't release any information about what happened while at the scene but the media "interprets" or talks to someone who may not really be a reliable witness and puts a buzz worthy spin on their story before the facts are released. I'm sure we'll find out more as time goes on but I still think the young man was absolutely in the wrong for not stopping and providing immediate aid. Also very sorry to hear this is hitting close to home for some.
     
  17. Scott V

    Scott V New Member

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    I could not believe this when I first got the email from the riding group. I have not seen John for a while as I have been off the bike due to a back injury. I did ride with John for several years and as Andrew said above John was simply an awesome man who was always fun to be around. John you will be missed.

    By not citing at the scene, it allows the police to conduct a thorough investigation to determine if other charges are warranted. If they cited/arrested him at the scene for the hit and run, the driver could immediately plead guilty and no further charges could be added. Once arrested, you appear in court generally within 48 hours and an investigation would be nowhere near complete to add additional charges besides the hit and run. It takes time to investigate a major collision so it may take months before charges are filed if deemed appropriate. Hope this helps understand why driver are not often arrested at the scene.
     
  18. dstepper

    dstepper Over the hill

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    Charges can always be added or modified by the District Attorney by filing a modified complaint, they have 1 year to do that on a misdemeanor charge and longer on a felony filing. The question is if Laguna PD is going to close the file, wonder if the kids blood was drawn. Since no arrest he would have had to voluntarily submit. So much unknown.
     
  19. jae2460

    jae2460 Active Member

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    The kid is probably from a rich influential family in Laguna... Good lawyer, etc.

    We are what we do. The rest is BS.

    The kid critically injured another human being, then drove away. The victim died from his injuries. That action should be punished for what it is, regardless of the age or the perception of the person that committed it.

    Until drivers are held accountable for their actions with serious punishment, this will continue. I can't tell you how many people I saw today driving and looking down at their Dumb phones. People don't care because they don't have to, they get away with it. That's the cold hard truth about human beings.
     
  20. Sweetpea

    Sweetpea Member

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    Does anyone know why they can't/don't install those concrete barriers like they have down south of Dana Point? Is it the cost?
     

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