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  1. #1
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    Assault on Ballona Creek last night (1/2/2013) ~6pm

    At the entrance to Ballona Creek path on Inglewood last night I came across a police car and two rather shaken looking riders. They were ok but one of them had just gotten jumped by two men. I didn't get the full story, but I think the second cyclist came along and scared them, which may also explain why I saw one bike not two. If you folks are on here I wish you well.

    I've been doing the bicycle commute for 1.5 months now, and am trying to decide how I should deal with this. I know this path has a bad history, but I was under the impression that things had been better lately. The path gives me a nice direct route from work to the Expo line, so I am trying to decide if I should continue using it, or trade the dangers of thugs with the dangers of a street route.

    I am a newbie, so I would appreciate any advice from more seasoned riders here.

    Cheers,

    Peter

  2. #2
    Seat Sniffer Biker395's Avatar
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    Holy crap. That would have been me if I didn't agree to give a friend's disabled sister a ride from LAX to her home that day. That spot (adjacent the housing project) is just where I pick up the bike path, and I would have been there at just that time. I'm usually with a partner, but not so much lately ... the cold has wimpified some of my colleagues.

    I presume you take the Ballona Creek path eastward from that intersection? In the past, assaults have taken place under the 405 bridge, but not Inglewood.

    If you're headed westbound to the SoBay bike path, there are other options ... and I'm taking one of them tonight.

    MFers.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Biker395 View Post
    Holy crap. That would have been me if I didn't agree to give a friend's disabled sister a ride from LAX to her home that day. That spot (adjacent the housing project) is just where I pick up the bike path, and I would have been there at just that time. I'm usually with a partner, but not so much lately ... the cold has wimpified some of my colleagues.

    I presume you take the Ballona Creek path eastward from that intersection? In the past, assaults have taken place under the 405 bridge, but not Inglewood.

    If you're headed westbound to the SoBay bike path, there are other options ... and I'm taking one of them tonight.

    MFers.
    I take the creek east from Inglewood and exit at Kronenthal park on Jefferson. Can't confirm that it happened at the entrance and not further in, but two weeks ago right after I entered I noticed movement to my left and saw someone in the shadows suddenly move onto the path and then stop when I turned to look at them. At the time I thought it was someone trying to cross the path or go through the rails, but now I am thinking it may have been something else. Ever since I have been riding with my light on the brightest mode and turned to the left so I have a clear view of what is in the shadows. Looking for an alternate route now...

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    good ole Mar Vista...FTW !!

  5. #5
    SuperGimp TrojanHorse's Avatar
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    I used to ride that path a lot back in say... 2000. It was like a flat-o-matic back then.

    As a general rule, I'd steer clear of bike paths after dark, regardless of which one it is. Before dark is fine... the bozos are usually sleeping in.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Jed19's Avatar
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    Ballona Creek has had a terrible reputation (at least some section of it) for a long time. Please, do not become a statistic. Find alternative route when it's dark.
    Regards,

    Jed

  7. #7
    Seat Sniffer Biker395's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TrojanHorse View Post
    I used to ride that path a lot back in say... 2000. It was like a flat-o-matic back then.

    As a general rule, I'd steer clear of bike paths after dark, regardless of which one it is. Before dark is fine... the bozos are usually sleeping in.
    The biggest flat offenders are those seagulls, dropping mussels on the bike path to crack them open. Those suckers are sharp!

    I agree with your assessment. In my experience, criminals are not early risers.

    I took that path daily, but will be using the streets of Westchester instead for a while.
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  8. #8
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    Inglewood always up to no good!

  9. #9
    Senior Member RIRview's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HBxRider View Post
    Inglewood always up to no good!

    Inglehood.

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    I ride on Ballona on weekends during daylight hours only. I have ridden it at night a couple of times and it is scary as there are no lights. I have little lights on my bike to be seen and it is not suitable for riding on that path. Also there are the occasional bikers with no lights that can freak you out. I havent experienced any violence on the path but again i stay off it at night. I would much rather be on streets at night as the streets are lit and you not isolated from a safety perspective. If u want to go cross town and are willing to bike up to venice blvd, that is a good street to ride cross town as it has a bike lane.

  11. #11
    Cycle Year Round CB HI's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pafriend View Post
    I am a newbie, so I would appreciate any advice from more seasoned riders here.

    Cheers,

    Peter
    I thought that some years ago they had locked the entrances in that area at night.

    I would probably continue riding the path, but I might want to join up with a passing cyclist through the Inglewood section. At night, use an extremely bright HID light for both riding and blinding anyone that tries to block the path.

    I would try and get three of my biggest cycling buddies together to ride the section a couple times a week. Put one guy in the lead and the other three close behind but just out of sight. I hate letting thugs takeover our paths.
    Land of the Free, Because of the Brave.

  12. #12
    Formerly Gordo Grande Rip Van Winkle's Avatar
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    I am sorry to hear about this. I've lived about two blocks from that entrance for the past 25 years, , and ride it constantly. I never ride it past sundown, and only in the early morning if I'm with friends. I also try to be super aware when I do it.

    Might I suggest that you get off at Sawtelle, and back on near Centinela, and vice versa. . You can go just south of the creek, and take Mcdonald street.
    Rip van Winkle slept for 20 years, and when he awoke, all the bikes had changed!

  13. #13
    Seat Sniffer Biker395's Avatar
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    Here we go. Another assault last Friday.

    http://bikinginla.wordpress.com/2013...#comment-56837

    FWIW, I rode by there on my way home, by myself, at about the same time.
    Proud parent of a happy inner child ...
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  14. #14
    Senior Member CommuteCommando's Avatar
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    I don't ride alone during off peak times, especially on the river side MUP's
    As much as you paid for that Beemer [Mercedies, Audi, Escalade], I'm surprised it didn't come equipped with turn signals.

  15. #15
    Seat Sniffer Biker395's Avatar
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    That was at 6PM, no? Lots of people on that path at that time.
    Proud parent of a happy inner child ...
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Biker395 View Post
    That was at 6PM, no? Lots of people on that path at that time.
    There would be plenty of daylight at 6pm which is disconcerting enough. I don't know from experience but my guess is Mon-Thur would busier than Friday with people in weekend mode. I've only ridden that path at 4-6pm Sat/Sunday but it can be pretty quiet the further inland you get. The activity starts dropping significantly in the late afternoon on the weekend. Most of the cyclists you do see are on inexpensive looking bikes that probably wouldn't be attractive theft targets.

    BTW, this sounds a lot like the bike thefts on the SART where a group of thugs threw a bike on roadies then stole their (expensive looking) road bikes. From my recollection one of the thefts happened on a Saturday afternoon. They eventually caught the kids responsible for the thefts.
    Last edited by Dunbar; 07-24-13 at 07:37 PM.

  17. #17
    Just Plain Slow PhotoJoe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Biker395 View Post
    That was at 6PM, no? Lots of people on that path at that time.
    The OP was 6pm. I don't see a time referenced in your most recent post, though admittedly haven't read the whole linked article. If you are referring to the OP, keep in mind it was in January - 6pm would be dark and probably not well populated.
    If at first you don't succeed, Skydiving is not the sport for you!

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhotoJoe View Post
    The OP was 6pm. I don't see a time referenced in your most recent post, though admittedly haven't read the whole linked article.
    The linked article does say the attack happened at 6pm last Friday.

  19. #19
    Just Plain Slow PhotoJoe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dunbar View Post
    The linked article does say the attack happened at 6pm last Friday.
    Well that's different, then!
    If at first you don't succeed, Skydiving is not the sport for you!

  20. #20
    Member MoreBlackSwan's Avatar
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    I used to live (in the 80's/90's) right next to the Ballona Creek trail near Marina del Rey Middle school / S Centinela.
    I remember cyclists would occasionally run past my house bleeding and mad as hell, looking for these punk teenage gangbanger types, who would hide on the trail and pull a rope across the path to trip the cyclists and then rob them.

    That said, they cleaned up the trail very nicely since then but I would still be extra cautious about riding alone and near nighttime.

  21. #21
    Pedal pusher... alicestrong's Avatar
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    May you live long, live strong, and live happy!

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