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Old 03-22-11, 12:54 PM   #1
FixdGearHead
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Central Park: This is getting a little out of hand.

http://gothamist.com/2011/03/22/cops...in_central.php

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Old 03-22-11, 02:08 PM   #2
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ha ● rass
[huh-ras, har-uhs]
–verb (used with object)

1. to disturb persistently; torment, as with troubles or cares; bother continually; pester; persecute.

2. to trouble by repeated attacks, incursions, etc., as in war or hostilities; harry; raid.

3. to repeatedly give cyclists tickets for legal behavior, e.g. speeding tickets for legal speeds in an empty park, or riding without a helmet.
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Old 03-22-11, 04:12 PM   #3
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ha ● rass
[huh-ras, har-uhs]
–verb (used with object)

1. to disturb persistently; torment, as with troubles or cares; bother continually; pester; persecute.

2. to trouble by repeated attacks, incursions, etc., as in war or hostilities; harry; raid.

3. to repeatedly give cyclists tickets for legal behavior, e.g. speeding tickets for legal speeds in an empty park, or riding without a helmet.
They don't and cannot ticket for riding without a helmet unless you're under the age of 14, which is NY State law.

That said the way it works in NYC is the powers that be decide to "crack down" on the cyclists. The things they need to get a handle on is the riding the wrong way, deliverymen riding the sidewalks, running red lights on congested avenues, etc...

The way the precinct commanders deal with the edict is to place these dumb as crap beat cops in places where they can snooker the most amount of cyclists in the easiest way possible - commuters coming off a bridge, Central Park at 6AM, somebody running red lights or a stop sign on a bike path in the far Rockaway's, parking a squad car in a bike lane causing cyclists to move into to traffic solely to be able to write tickets for not riding in the bike lane, etc..., I.E. not where it will actually do some good, but instead where the cops can rack up the most amount of tickets with the least amount of manpower expended. Makes the precinct commanders look good with the numbers but does zip to actually solve the problems and just alienates cyclists like myself who then come to the prejudicial opinion that all beat cops are idiots.

SB
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Old 03-22-11, 04:22 PM   #4
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"They took my license, issued the summons and told me to ride safely in the park. "

I never have understood the license thing. What has a driver's license got to do with a bicycle? Does a moving violation count against the license like it would in a car? What about those who do not have a driver's license? Are you required to show a driver's license if you are on a bicycle?
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Old 03-22-11, 08:45 PM   #5
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No, you are not required to carry a driver's license to operate a bicycle, but when out and about you need to carry a valid form of identification or the police can take you to the local precinct to verify your address. A summons is in lieu of arrest, issued on the spot in an effort to save time...generally issued for infractions of law.
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Old 03-23-11, 09:24 AM   #6
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Ugh, yeah. I was out there on Tuesday, part of a group of cyclists being tailed by a cop car with flashing lights. It was ridiculous and obviously nothing more than an attempt to intimidate cyclists.
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Old 03-23-11, 09:55 AM   #7
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Happy-ish ending:

Police Apologize for Central Park Cyclist's Ticket (NYT)

Cops Apologize for Ticketing 9 out of 10 Central Park Cyclists (gothamist)

Because no, the speed limit actually is 25 mph. It pays to be vocal!

"At least they didn't get me doing an interval workout," says the one guy whose ticket was not revoked (28 mph).
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Old 03-23-11, 10:18 AM   #8
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Would it kill the NYPD to learn the laws they are "enforcing?"
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Old 03-23-11, 03:28 PM   #9
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Happy-ish ending:

Police Apologize for Central Park Cyclist's Ticket (NYT)

Cops Apologize for Ticketing 9 out of 10 Central Park Cyclists (gothamist)

Because no, the speed limit actually is 25 mph. It pays to be vocal!

"At least they didn't get me doing an interval workout," says the one guy whose ticket was not revoked (28 mph).
From what I've been reading, there is an ordinance for Parks where the speed limit is 15mph for bikes. I have also read that it's not a posted limit in Central Park anywhere along the road system. As well the tickets had technical errors telling those who received the tickets to contest in traffic court, when they need to contest in criminal court, as a result of the ticket being written for a violation of Parks Dept. rules. Thus the tickets were invalid.

This is all, as BTW, from the NY Times article.

SB
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Old 03-23-11, 06:38 PM   #10
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From Wikipedia...

"In this sense, the word fascist is intended to mean "oppressive", "intolerant", "chauvinist", "genocidal", "dictatorial", "racist", or "aggressive" – all concepts that are allegedly inspired by the ideology of actual fascism, and pervasive through fascist states. One might accuse an inconveniently placed police roadblock as being a "fascist tactic" for its perceived oppresion or interloping, or an overly authoritarian teacher as being "a total fascist". Terms like Nazi and Hitlerite, are often used in similar contexts."

New Zealand is looking better every day.
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Old 03-23-11, 07:28 PM   #11
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From what I've been reading, there is an ordinance for Parks where the speed limit is 15mph for bikes.
I read that too. The Central Park website states the cyclist speed limit is 25 mph, and i have never, ever seen these fabled 15 mph signs. I did a cursory search over the NYC Administrative Code and found nothing about 15 mph in the relevant section.
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Old 03-24-11, 06:21 AM   #12
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The real issue is not the speed limit but why.

At 6:30 AM the only reason to set-up a speed trap for bikes is to harass cyclist.

Someone relatively senior in NYC Police force has decided to harass cyclist. Where is the Mayor and the police chief, cyclist are not the problem.

Last edited by v70cat; 03-24-11 at 07:14 AM.
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Old 03-24-11, 06:30 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by withsriracha View Post
Ugh, yeah. I was out there on Tuesday, part of a group of cyclists being tailed by a cop car with flashing lights. It was ridiculous and obviously nothing more than an attempt to intimidate cyclists.
I've been wary of that happening to me. If it did, then I would stop and take a picture of them. At least this whole thing has led me to find a better route home from work. It is funny that I've had to adjust my life to get away from the police. I feel like I am on the run!
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Old 03-24-11, 07:08 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by v70cat View Post
At 6:30 AM the only reason to set-up a speed trap for bikes is to harass cyclist.
They're not even ticketing a few cars for the sake of consistency. The fact that the cops packed up the radar guns and left as soon as the loop opened up to cars proves that they're singling out cyclists for outright harassment.

Furthermore, they revoked all those tickets not because they were sorry, or that they didn't believe in the speed limit, but because they filled out the tickets incorrectly. You can't issue a summons to appear in Traffic Court b/c it was inside a park, where the offender could fight it by mail instead.

All this makes me want to buy a helmet cam & have it constantly recording.
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