DA decides no road rage in Cunningham case, but plenty of cyclist rage in Colorado Springs

richie.cunningham.hospital.205x205.jpg
Richie Cunningham.
Road rage is all the rage these days. Last Friday, the Boulder District Attorney revealed that no charges will be filed against Shepherd Wolfe, the driver who was involved in a July 4 accident that injured Australian triathlete Richie Cunningham. Initially, reports had said that Wolf had passed several cyclists, then come to a sudden stop at the bottom of a hill, causing Cunningham to brake hard and flip over his handlebars. Cunningham and three other cyclists felt the incident was the result of road rage, but Wolfe denied that, insisting he gave proper warning that he was passing the cyclists. And the Boulder County DA's office could find no probable cause that he'd commited a crime.

But there's plenty of rage to go around.

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Cyclist pack.
Yesterday, we posted a video that Mark Ewell had taken on Saturday, when he encountered a "cyclist pack" blocking traffic on Marksheffel Road outside of Colorado Springs, then posted on Facebook.

That video has been taken off Facebook -- and so it's disappeared from our original post -- and Ewell has posted an apology, but the comments keep coming. Some people think we should have turned Ewell over to authorities. Others think the cyclists should be spanked.

And then there's this from Anthony B Garcia:


The driver is kind of a dick, but the riders seem to be just a bunch of elitist assholes! They are breaking the law! His dickhead-crossing-a-solid-line trick was not too smart.
Can cyclists and drivers ever get along? Or will road rage cases continue to rage? And do you think we should have called the cops on the driver who made the video?

For more memorable takes, visit our Comment of the Day archive.



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10 comments
DarlingCR
DarlingCR

Some guy nearly grazed me going about 40mph then yelled a rather low brow insult. Flipped him off, he slammed on the brakes and got out. Little did he know I just stopped at Ace Hardware where I bought a wrench and vice grips, took it out and told him that I had no reservations about turning him into a vegetable with the blunt end.

greenbareknuckle
greenbareknuckle

The speed limit on the section of Marksheffel Road where Mark Ewell was complaining about the cyclists is only 25 mph.  Mark Ewell complained that the cyclists were only doing 20-25 mph.  Drivers feel entitled to speed.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

Time to REGISTER, LICENSE and mandate INSURANCE for ALL Bicyclists that ride on the PUBLIC ROADWAYS!

Schittphaiç Magü
Schittphaiç Magü

"Generally you're only a target of road rage if you drive or ride like a moron." Well, by golly, you just described at least 90% of all American motorists.

Josh Bradley
Josh Bradley

If you don't want to be a victim of road rage don't put yourself in the position to be the target. Don't cruise in the left lane with people behind you, don't cut people off, and so on...oh, and don't ride your bike on a road where you can not do the speed limit, where there's no shoulder so vehicles don't get stuck behind you, on twisty, narrow roads through canyons with blind curves, or ride side-by-side, or don't use hand signals, and so on. Generally you're only a target of road rage if you drive or ride like a moron.

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

It's a bet that however much road rage there is in Colorado Springs, it is inadequately prosecuted.  Fourth Judicial District DA Dan May has to devote the entire resources of his office to losing case after case against medical cannabis patients and caregivers, and to prosecuting Garrett Pritchard after Lt. Comte of the CSPD Narcotics Division misled him to believe that he could deliver cannabis in exchange for so-called "donations" with impunity.  I don't mean to try to hijack the thread, but it seems clear to me that May and probably any number of other fascist prosecutors in Colorado have a full plate trying to deal with innocuous conduct, limiting prosecution of crimes against cyclists only to the most extreme ones involving murder.

DontHitMeBro
DontHitMeBro

"And do you think we should have called the cops on the driver who made the video?"

Yes.  In case Westword has a short memory, consider the video evidence and charges against James Ernst:

http://blogs.westword.com/latestword/2012/09/bike_rage_video_colorado_state_patrol.php

Compare to this short video (yes, edited to show how Mark transfers and generalizes his anger):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GsDShMunAqc 

Mark has shown that his irrational anger and road rage can be transferred to a single rider glued to the side of the road, which is terrifying to any cyclist following all the laws.  Some of the other recent and famous Colorado road-rage vs. bike incidents were cases in which the motorist had multiple previous encounters with bikes, suggesting that the worst actions of a few people should be taken seriously.

RobertChase
RobertChase topcommenter

@DonkeyHotay Time to get motorists who use their vehicles to threaten bicyclists off the roads and into the penal system!

richord55
richord55

If you want to lecture cyclists on how to ride, you really should get your facts, and the rules of the road, straight first.  That pack of cyclists was doing 20-25 mph -- in a 25 mph zone. There's ABSOLUTELY no requirement to "do the speed limit," or maintain a minimum speed, on a road like that.  You are a VERY confused driver, if you think ANY other road user has an obligation to "stay out of your way."  Your attitude sucks, and if you carry it into your driving habits, it's illegal and dangerous. 

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