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Old 04-07-11, 07:57 PM   #1
Guitarrick
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It should be!!

Is it considered a felony if a person throws something from a moving vehicle and hits a cyclist with it? I remember reading about this, maybe over the past couple of years, that a new law was being put in effect. Maybe just here in Ohio? Anybody know?
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Old 04-07-11, 09:12 PM   #2
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Well, for one thing ... it's littering.
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Old 04-07-11, 09:49 PM   #3
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A motorcycalist threw a glass bottle under the front tire of my fiance's bicycle as she was entering a steep descent into a gorge. She is ok, but it effectively took out the front tire and tube.
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Old 04-08-11, 10:28 AM   #4
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Well, for one thing ... it's littering.
I don't know if littering is a felony but it was serious enough to keep Arlo Guthrie from being drafted into the army.
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Old 04-08-11, 11:04 AM   #5
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Well, I guess it would depend on the object. Throwing a wad a paper at a cyclist would just be insulting. Throwing a rock would be assault.
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Old 04-08-11, 11:37 AM   #6
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If someone leans out the window of a car and punches you in the head, I believe it's felony assault; why wouldn't hitting you with a bottle or other object not be as serious. If you are pedaling down the road with vehicles traveling by on your left and someone throws something at you, it should be attempted murder. IMHO. A reasonable person can assume that if you go down unexpectedly, on a busy-ish road you could be run over.

A problem arises when the "thrower" drives off. You need to keep your wits about you to get their plate number, and there have to be witnesses who are willing to cooperate; otherwise it's your word against theirs.
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Old 04-08-11, 12:10 PM   #7
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If someone leans out the window of a car and punches you in the head, I believe it's felony assault; why wouldn't hitting you with a bottle or other object not be as serious.
the first example has an intent behind it (you intended to punch the person) the second may or may not have the intent which could result in reckless / negligent charge if intent cannot be shown.
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Old 04-08-11, 12:19 PM   #8
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Throwing a rock would be assault.
(depending on the state)

Think of assault as an attempted battery. So in this case assault could only be claimed if the cyclist saw the rock coming, otherwise it is just battery. If they saw the rock and were hit, then it is assault and battery. If they saw the rock and moved, then it is just an assault.

Although here in NY there is only assault (they did away with the distinction but have a million categories of assault)

just my view on the hypothetical.
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Old 04-08-11, 04:02 PM   #9
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What crime, and the severity of such, would depend heavily on the state. In Florida it could fall under a number of laws, including Throwing a deadly missile (FS 790.13), Assault (if missed and non-deadly weapon, FS 784.011), Aggravated Assault (Missed and Deadly, FS 784.021), Simple Battery (Hit and Non-deadly, FS 784.03), or Aggravated Battery (Hit and Deadly, FS 784.045)

Assault, and Simple Battery are misdemeanors in the state of Florida. Aggravated Assault, Aggravated Battery, and Throwing a deadly missile are all felonies. There are probably some other laws that can apply as well. These all require intent as well. Without intent you may get negligence and littering, but that's about it from a criminal standpoint.
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Old 04-08-11, 04:52 PM   #10
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It's going to be a state-by-state (and maybe even county-by-county/city-by-city) thing.

But in general, that should be pretty easy to characterize as assault (which can be either felony or misdemeanor depending on the severity)
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Old 04-09-11, 01:30 AM   #11
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In FL it is.

Quote:
Chapter 790
WEAPONS AND FIREARMS
790.19 Shooting into or throwing deadly missiles into dwellings, public or private buildings, occupied or not occupied; vessels, aircraft, buses, railroad cars, streetcars, or other vehicles.—Whoever, wantonly or maliciously, shoots at, within, or into, or throws any missile or hurls or projects a stone or other hard substance which would produce death or great bodily harm, at, within, or in any public or private building, occupied or unoccupied, or public or private bus or any train, locomotive, railway car, caboose, cable railway car, street railway car, monorail car, or vehicle of any kind which is being used or occupied by any person, or any boat, vessel, ship, or barge lying in or plying the waters of this state, or aircraft flying through the airspace of this state shall be guilty of a felony of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
History.—s. 2, ch. 3281, 1881; RS 2696; ss. 1, 2, ch. 4987, 1901; ss. 1, 2, ch. 4988, 1901; GS 3628; RGS 5560; CGL 7746; s. 1, ch. 59-458; s. 752, ch. 71-136; s. 1, ch. 74-67.
*Bold mine.
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Old 04-09-11, 02:17 AM   #12
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A problem arises when the "thrower" drives off. You need to keep your wits about you to get their plate number, and there have to be witnesses who are willing to cooperate; otherwise it's your word against theirs.
More to the point, you need to live in an area where the police will actually do something about it. Around here, they have an official policy not to -- even if the particular officer you report it to wants to take action, they'll get instructions from above not to pursue it.

I've been there and done that, when I got hit with an egg thrown by some 19 year old punk kid a few years ago. Still, some good came out of it. I'm told the father of the kid's girlfriend (who happened to be the owner of the car he was borrowing that night) was less than impressed. It's just a shame his concerns weren't shared by the Queensland police.
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Old 04-09-11, 01:56 PM   #13
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More to the point, you need to live in an area where the police will actually do something about it. Around here, they have an official policy not to -- even if the particular officer you report it to wants to take action, they'll get instructions from above not to pursue it.

I've been there and done that, when I got hit with an egg thrown by some 19 year old punk kid a few years ago. Still, some good came out of it. I'm told the father of the kid's girlfriend (who happened to be the owner of the car he was borrowing that night) was less than impressed. It's just a shame his concerns weren't shared by the Queensland police.
Yeah, I had considered that as I was typing it and it is really a shame that this lack of concern is really widespread amongst LE.
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Old 04-09-11, 04:59 PM   #14
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Something happened to me today -- I was riding through my small town in the last leg of a 15-mile ride through some (thankfully) quiet vineyard roads. There's a main road that runs through town and a small side road that used to be the main road back in the day -- I was on the smaller side road. It's narrow, has a posted speed of 25 MPH and the "bike lane" is basically a thick white line on the side of the road, making less than a foot wide of space on the side of the road. There's really no where to ride but in the road lane (especially since there's lots of bike hazards like broken pavement, glass, etc. that because the space is so narrow, it's nearly impossible to navigate). Adding to all that, it's Saturday in Wine Country so there's cars parked on the side of the road. For a cyclist to stay in the bike "lane" would require impressive dexterity and some deft weaving around cars -- I'm not that good. But I just stayed as close to the line as possible which put me in the car part of the road. Anyway, cars are passing me no problem and then I sense a car coming behind me and notice the guy is going really slow. Whatever right? But wait, then he beeps at me. I turn back and see this old guy in an SUV is gesturing with what seems like anger for me to get off to the side of the road. I'm already hugging the line, just not INSIDE the line. I look back at him and then ride on, ignoring him.

Look, I don't want to be one of those cyclists who pisses off drivers but I don't see how I did anything wrong here. We're supposed to SHARE the road, right? I was sharing -- as best I could under the circumstances and conditions and the guy who outweighs me by 2-tons is bent out of shape? It wasn't even a main road. I'll just never understand the thought process of people who refuse to consider that their cars are MUCH bigger, faster and MUCH heavier than cyclists and pedestrians. Are people in such a hurry that the few seconds it takes to safely go around a cyclist/pedestrian going to ruin their whole damn day? I know I'm preaching to the choir -- and heck, maybe y'all will tell me I was in the wrong (if I was, I want to know) but it's frustrating.

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Old 04-11-11, 11:37 PM   #15
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No replies on my post? I'll assume I was in the right then. ;-D
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Old 04-12-11, 05:57 PM   #16
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Not a felony maybe assult.
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