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  1. #1
    BikeForums Founder Joe Gardner's Avatar
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    MA Cyclist Charged with Delaying Traffic

    Massachusetts bicyclist Scott Jenney is facing the criminal charge of "disorderly person" for the crime of delaying traffic. He was followed by an off-duty Wilmington, MA police officer and later stopped by a uniformed officer. He politely cooperated. The police told him he should be no further left then a few inches away from snow banks and other obstacles on the side of the road. The same police department had previously told him to stay out of the travel lane. However, the law gives cyclists the same right to use the travel lane as motorists. Later Jenney received a notice of the Disorderly Person complaint against him in the mail. The charge has maximum penalties of a $200 fine and/or six months in prison. A scanned copy of the police report is available below.

    MassBike President Paul Schimek said, "There is no legal basis for this charge. Bicyclists have the same right to use the road as motorists. If a bicyclist violates a traffic rule, he should be given a traffic ticket. But it is not a crime to ride your bike." The cyclist was not charged with any traffic violation. "Furthermore," said Schimek, "the police by their own words do not know how the traffic law applies to bicycles, even though it's very simple: bicyclists must follow the same rules as motorists."

    Full story here.
    And a press release.

  2. #2
    Sumanitu taka owaci LittleBigMan's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Joe Gardner
    Massachusetts bicyclist Scott Jenney is facing the criminal charge of "disorderly person" for the crime of delaying traffic.
    Thanks for this interesting and informative post, Joe! :thumbup:

    I believe this issue will be resolved in cyclists' favor, as it should be.

    One of my most coveted privileges as a cyclist is the fair, equal and reasonable use of the road. This is in keeping with the concept our country holds dear, that one's rights do not diminish
    with one's wealth or majority status.
    Last edited by LittleBigMan; 06-25-01 at 09:15 PM.

  3. #3
    NOT a weight weenie Hunter's Avatar
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    Good point Pete! Thanks for the info Joe!
    If only the point you made Pete were actually adhered to it would be a better place to live.

  4. #4
    Carfree since '82. Grrr! JonR's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Hunter
    If only the point you made Pete were actually adhered to it would be a better place to live.
    Yeah, like maybe I'd have health insurance.

    I hope that cyclist sues the pants off the police, if possible.
    On leave of absence as of March 13, 2002. Contact by email.

  5. #5
    It's the fight in the man Rich's Avatar
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    What a crazy situation to find yourself in...

    Hope justice pervails!

    Rich
    Making New Zealand a safer place :)

  6. #6
    Ich bin ein Lowlander! toolfreak's Avatar
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    It`s rare, i feel like US cyclist are discrimminated by police, i hope the law will set things right.
    I can`t think about the issue; it makes me angry , charged for being a cyclist, what a crazy world!
    Mark







    Dancevalley 2th of august 2003 -> JXL, Laidback luke, Sasha, John Digweed, Monica Krusse.....and on!

  7. #7
    Just Follow Your Feet! AlphaGeek's Avatar
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    When are these people going to get a life. The police SHOULD know the law. Sure the judge will throw this out and fine the officer for his stupidity!

    signed,

    Disorderly Person :irritated
    Recumbents rock!

  8. #8
    Carfree since '82. Grrr! JonR's Avatar
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    Originally posted by AlphaGeek
    When are these people going to get a life. The police SHOULD know the law. Sure the judge will throw this out and fine the officer for his stupidity!

    signed,

    Disorderly Person :irritated
    Hear, hear!

    Another D. P.
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  9. #9
    Every lane is a bike lane Chris L's Avatar
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    I am sitting here beside myself! This is one of the stupidest things I have ever heard of. If they charged every motorist who ever held up traffic in those massive traffic jams they have, it would generate enough money to pay for the abolition of all forms of taxation completely in fines.

    The poor people at point C must be wondering what is so great about point B that makes people at point A want to get there so bloody fast.

    Chris
    "I am never going to flirt with idleness again" - Roy Keane
    "We invite everyone to question the entire culture we take for granted." - Manic Street Preachers.
    My blog.
    My bike tours. Japan tour page under construction.

  10. #10
    Carfree since '82. Grrr! JonR's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Chris L
    If they charged every motorist who ever held up traffic in those massive traffic jams they have, it would generate enough money to pay for the abolition of all forms of taxation completely in fines.
    Similarly, why don't they seriously go after people who run red lights? They could make a ton of money that way! On recent rides I have seen no red lights, except at empty intersections, that didn't get run by at least one car. A few years ago, I might see one red light in a half year being run.
    On leave of absence as of March 13, 2002. Contact by email.

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