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Update on "5 cyclists killed in Kalamazoo"

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Update on "5 cyclists killed in Kalamazoo"

Old 04-25-18, 12:32 PM
  #226  
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Originally Posted by Oneder View Post
Surprising it doesn't happen more often.
It probably happens frequently, but with 1 person being killed (in a car, cyclist, or pedestrian), and mostly ignored.

What made this exceptional was hitting several cyclists, attempting to leave the scene, and the extent of his intoxication.
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Old 04-25-18, 12:37 PM
  #227  
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I saw a blurb on tv about a fatal hit and run last week on my closest major street, and another one not far off the week before. Now I can't even find anything. That was kind of the start of the season for bicycling for pleasure here though, so I guess that is 'normal'.
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Old 04-25-18, 05:13 PM
  #228  
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Trial coverage reports and YT video worth watching:

http://www.mlive.com/news/kalamazoo/...ial_openi.html

http://www.mlive.com/news/kalamazoo/...rs_testif.html

https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_c...&v=EZqkORxgsFE
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Old 04-26-18, 06:50 AM
  #229  
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TY for the updates.
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Old 04-26-18, 07:46 AM
  #230  
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https://www.wsj.com/articles/hit-and...omments_sector

Sadly, fatalities from car accidents are on the rise, for cyclists, pedestrians, and drivers too. Last night in CT, a woman was struck while walking across the street. The guy who hit her got out to help, and was struck by a second car and killed. Darkness and rain were factors.
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Old 04-26-18, 08:05 AM
  #231  
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Originally Posted by SJM205 View Post
https://www.wsj.com/articles/hit-and...omments_sector

Sadly, fatalities from car accidents are on the rise, for cyclists, pedestrians, and drivers too. Last night in CT, a woman was struck while walking across the street. The guy who hit her got out to help, and was struck by a second car and killed. Darkness and rain were factors.
I blame a lot of that on people being in a big damn hurry all the time because they didn't start out ten minutes earlier. Not paying full attention to their driving is another one that is often the result of paying attention to their phone instead, while driving a 3 or 4000 pound tank that can decimate cyclists and pedestrians.
The biggest problem being people just don't think.
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Old 04-26-18, 09:54 AM
  #232  
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Trial begins for Charles Pickett, man accused in crash that killed 5 bicyclists

https://www.battlecreekenquirer.com/...ial/544692002/

Story appeared in several newspapers.
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Old 04-26-18, 10:19 AM
  #233  
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Originally Posted by hotbike View Post
Trial begins for Charles Pickett, man accused in crash that killed 5 bicyclists

https://www.battlecreekenquirer.com/...ial/544692002/

Story appeared in several newspapers.
Thanks, just the evidence presented in this news story is pretty damning for the defendant. I wish there was national coverage of this, if for nothing more than awareness.
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Old 04-26-18, 10:38 AM
  #234  
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Originally Posted by Ballenxj View Post
I blame a lot of that on people being in a big damn hurry all the time because they didn't start out ten minutes earlier. Not paying full attention to their driving is another one that is often the result of paying attention to their phone instead, while driving a 3 or 4000 pound tank that can decimate cyclists and pedestrians.
The biggest problem being people just don't think.
It's not just starting out a mere 10 minutes earlier... it is also a matter of not actually "driving." Far too many motorists just point their car and go... they really do not engage in the process (which most street cyclists must do, just to stay alive). Far too many drivers fail to plan for exits, and turns, fail to signal, and depend far too much on "more power" and braking... gas guzzling activities that can be mitigated by observing, planing and engaging.

This is quite easily observable when watching motorists and noting that apparently there is no such thing as a safe following distance...

And yeah, the phone, the radio, the "infotainment system" etc... just too many damn possible distractions behind the wheel.
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Old 04-26-18, 10:39 AM
  #235  
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Originally Posted by Ballenxj View Post
Thanks, just the evidence presented in this news story is pretty damning for the defendant. I wish there was national coverage of this, if for nothing more than awareness.
That is a problem with our news.

Sensational headlines (which I believe went national), but no follow through.

Perhaps a little follow through here and elsewhere
would help drivers and intoxicated drivers understand the consequences of their actions.
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Old 04-26-18, 12:11 PM
  #236  
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
That is a problem with our news.

Sensational headlines (which I believe went national), but no follow through.

Perhaps a little follow through here and elsewhere
would help drivers and intoxicated drivers understand the consequences of their actions.
Just how much "understanding" do they need? At my local DMV there are a number of large signs warning of the issues of drinking and driving... along with a huge sign that states that a DUI costs a minimum of $10,000 and likely more.
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Old 04-26-18, 12:18 PM
  #237  
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Originally Posted by genec View Post
Just how much "understanding" do they need? At my local DMV there are a number of large signs warning of the issues of drinking and driving... along with a huge sign that states that a DUI costs a minimum of $10,000 and likely more.
Pickett would be getting off easy with a $10K fine.
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Old 04-26-18, 12:57 PM
  #238  
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
Pickett would be getting off easy with a $10K fine.
And if or when he does get out, his license should be revoked for a long, long time, leaving him with the only options for transport being, foot, public transport, or "gasp" a bicycle. You folks do realize that most convicted of a d.u.i. resort to cycling?
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Old 04-26-18, 10:07 PM
  #239  
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Originally Posted by Ballenxj View Post
You folks do realize that most convicted of a d.u.i. resort to cycling?
I wouldn't be surprised from anecdotal knowledge that most convicted of a dui simply drive without the license.
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Old 04-27-18, 09:13 AM
  #240  
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Originally Posted by genec View Post
It's not just starting out a mere 10 minutes earlier... it is also a matter of not actually "driving." Far too many motorists just point their car and go... they really do not engage in the process (which most street cyclists must do, just to stay alive). Far too many drivers fail to plan for exits, and turns, fail to signal, and depend far too much on "more power" and braking... gas guzzling activities that can be mitigated by observing, planing and engaging.

This is quite easily observable when watching motorists and noting that apparently there is no such thing as a safe following distance...

And yeah, the phone, the radio, the "infotainment system" etc... just too many damn possible distractions behind the wheel.
I have to say, not all of this corresponds to my experience. In my area, I see improvement in the attention that drivers (particularly young inexperienced drivers) devote to their driving, especially towards cyclists. There are always the self-absorbed idiots, and I agree that the level of distracting factors (both within the vehicle and without) is much, much greater than when I learned to drive. Also, the traffic is much denser and faster than when I learned. I think that all of this forces drivers to pay more attention.

I do see the occasional pack of drivers imitating the "Fast and Furious" type of driving, but that is exclusively on limited access highways while I'm driving. The kids driving rice burners, around here, are the easiest group to get along with when I'm riding. I've had only one experience with a close pass from a rice burner in the past, what, 15 years since that first (idiotic, imo) movie came out? And I've not been subjected to any other harassment (horn blowing, yelling, brake-checking, etc.) from this segment of the driving public.

Overall, where I ride, I feel slightly safer riding now than I did when I started out 30 years ago, mainly because the huge increase in cyclists over that period has made drivers more aware of us. I'd rather share the road with an aggressive driver than an oblivious one. I have not noticed a big increase in distracted driving, though I mostly ride on roads that are not conducive to driving and texting (generally lower traffic, narrower, hills/curves/bad sightlines). The most frequent indication of driver distraction that I've seen has been drivers failing to proceed when a red light turns green. The most disturbing trend I've experienced over the past 30 years or so is an increase in aggressive driving on the weekend, when people are rushing around trying to get things done (e.g. shopping, kids to soccer, going to garden center, etc. etc.). Fortunately this is greatly reduced during the months when school is out, which corresponds to the months when I tend to ride the most.

However, this is strictly applicable to where I ride. I could understand that if one rides on long, straight roads with shoulders that you might see a significant increase in distracted driving.


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Old 04-27-18, 09:35 AM
  #241  
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Originally Posted by noimagination View Post
I have to say, not all of this corresponds to my experience. In my area, I see improvement in the attention that drivers (particularly young inexperienced drivers) devote to their driving, especially towards cyclists. There are always the self-absorbed idiots, and I agree that the level of distracting factors (both within the vehicle and without) is much, much greater than when I learned to drive. Also, the traffic is much denser and faster than when I learned. I think that all of this forces drivers to pay more attention.

I do see the occasional pack of drivers imitating the "Fast and Furious" type of driving, but that is exclusively on limited access highways while I'm driving. The kids driving rice burners, around here, are the easiest group to get along with when I'm riding. I've had only one experience with a close pass from a rice burner in the past, what, 15 years since that first (idiotic, imo) movie came out? And I've not been subjected to any other harassment (horn blowing, yelling, brake-checking, etc.) from this segment of the driving public.

Overall, where I ride, I feel slightly safer riding now than I did when I started out 30 years ago, mainly because the huge increase in cyclists over that period has made drivers more aware of us. I'd rather share the road with an aggressive driver than an oblivious one. I have not noticed a big increase in distracted driving, though I mostly ride on roads that are not conducive to driving and texting (generally lower traffic, narrower, hills/curves/bad sightlines). The most frequent indication of driver distraction that I've seen has been drivers failing to proceed when a red light turns green. The most disturbing trend I've experienced over the past 30 years or so is an increase in aggressive driving on the weekend, when people are rushing around trying to get things done (e.g. shopping, kids to soccer, going to garden center, etc. etc.). Fortunately this is greatly reduced during the months when school is out, which corresponds to the months when I tend to ride the most.

However, this is strictly applicable to where I ride. I could understand that if one rides on long, straight roads with shoulders that you might see a significant increase in distracted driving.


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The majority of my cycling was work commuting... plus long weekend rides... on the long weekend rides, to areas that were more remote, no, I was not often bothered by distracted motorists... but then again if one were a distracted motorist on winding mountain roads, I would think the Darwin laws would quickly apply.

When commuting however, and mixing with high speed traffic on urban multi-lane arterial roads, it was quite obvious that motorists often were just not paying attention... were merely pointing the car and playing follow the leader. When I took walks along parts of the same route I commuted on, it became quite obvious to me what was happening... I could see motorists paying attention to cell phones vice the road... the delays at green lights, the sudden jerk back into the lane when a slight curve occurs, and the phones/devices in hand or stuck to the dashboard... all quite visible to someone standing on the side of the road watching.

This quote from you... "and I agree that the level of distracting factors (both within the vehicle and without) is much, much greater than when I learned to drive. Also, the traffic is much denser and faster than when I learned. I think that all of this forces drivers to pay more attention..." is where we agree and disagree... traffic is indeed heavier, faster and there are more distractions... but I really do not see drivers paying any more attention... I see just the opposite... I'd honestly like to think they are looking out the windshield more and driving better, but as I have observed while walking... this just isn't happening.
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Old 04-27-18, 11:49 AM
  #242  
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Originally Posted by genec View Post
The majority of my cycling was work commuting... plus long weekend rides... on the long weekend rides, to areas that were more remote, no, I was not often bothered by distracted motorists... but then again if one were a distracted motorist on winding mountain roads, I would think the Darwin laws would quickly apply.

When commuting however, and mixing with high speed traffic on urban multi-lane arterial roads, it was quite obvious that motorists often were just not paying attention... were merely pointing the car and playing follow the leader. When I took walks along parts of the same route I commuted on, it became quite obvious to me what was happening... I could see motorists paying attention to cell phones vice the road... the delays at green lights, the sudden jerk back into the lane when a slight curve occurs, and the phones/devices in hand or stuck to the dashboard... all quite visible to someone standing on the side of the road watching.

This quote from you... "and I agree that the level of distracting factors (both within the vehicle and without) is much, much greater than when I learned to drive. Also, the traffic is much denser and faster than when I learned. I think that all of this forces drivers to pay more attention..." is where we agree and disagree... traffic is indeed heavier, faster and there are more distractions... but I really do not see drivers paying any more attention... I see just the opposite... I'd honestly like to think they are looking out the windshield more and driving better, but as I have observed while walking... this just isn't happening.
Ah, yes, I see - that makes sense. I no longer have a long commute, but when I did, I confess that at times it seemed more like the traffic was carrying me along than that I was actively driving my car. And that was years decades ago, when the only distraction was the radio. It must be worse now that everyone has a phone, and can fill the time by looking at that tiny screen, or gabbing with someone on the phone.

I don't ride much during commuting hours, so I haven't experienced what you're talking about. I do occasionally ride during the evening commute (still on local roads), and it seems to me that drivers are more aggressive than distracted, since they're trying to get home. I don't ride on commuting routes, though, just on local feeder type roads, so the zoning out you're seeing isn't as much of a problem.

Walking - people think that cycling on the road is dangerous, I was shocked at how close drivers get to me when I'm running. I stick to the sidewalk where there is one, but when there isn't drivers think nothing of coming within inches of you. It's much worse than when I'm cycling.

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Old 04-28-18, 05:14 PM
  #243  
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Many, many people aren't really "drivers" so much as they're "operators", and they don't do that well either.
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Old 05-01-18, 03:06 PM
  #244  
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Driver guilty of murdering 5 bicyclists in Kalamazoo:


http://www.mlive.com/news/kalamazoo/...rder_tria.html
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Old 05-01-18, 03:59 PM
  #245  
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Originally Posted by seeker333 View Post

Driver guilty of murdering 5 bicyclists in Kalamazoo:


Driver guilty of murdering 5 bicyclists in Kalamazoo | MLive.com
Thank You for posting the Jury's decision. Guilty of 2nd degree murder, or causing great bodily harm while intoxicated on all counts. It's truly a shame that it had to come to this.
Now we have to wait for sentencing.
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Old 05-01-18, 05:10 PM
  #246  
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Originally Posted by Ballenxj View Post
Thank You for posting the Jury's decision. Guilty of 2nd degree murder, or causing great bodily harm while intoxicated on all counts. It's truly a shame that it had to come to this.
Now we have to wait for sentencing.
Justice was served. What a horrendous waste of the most precious gift.
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Old 05-01-18, 05:24 PM
  #247  
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Originally Posted by Equinox View Post
Justice was served. What a horrendous waste of the most precious gift.
Agreed, hopefully he gets the maximum sentence. It's about the best our justice system can do, but bittersweet to say the least.
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Old 05-02-18, 05:34 AM
  #248  
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Now we can only hope the Judge gives him the maximum sentence he can.
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Old 05-02-18, 06:20 AM
  #249  
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Of course, we can now look forward to 50 years of appeals due to a somewhat liberal application of the term "murder". Supreme Court case?
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Old 05-02-18, 06:37 AM
  #250  
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
Of course, we can now look forward to 50 years of appeals due to a somewhat liberal application of the term "murder". Supreme Court case?

There's no appellate issue here that would begin to even interest the US Supreme Court.

2nd degree murder in Michigan includes causing a death by reckless disregard for human life. It does not require an intentional killing.

The evidence clearly supports the verdict.
Pretty certain the defendant will appeal, assuming he gets a substantial sentence.

However, he'll be in prison while those appeals run.

Without knowing all the evidentiary rulings in the trial, and the jury instructions, you can't say whether there are any valid appeal points, but if I'm betting I'd put strong money on his conviction holding up.

And I'd bet the farm that the US Supreme Court is never taking an appeal from this case. First, an appeal to the SC would only occur after he exhausted all state remedies; Second an appeal to the SC would be by writ of certiori, which the Court has idsccretion to accept or reject, andd they accept less than 1%, Third, the SC just does not take state law criminal cases that do not involve the death penalty, or siginificant constitutional issues.
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