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View Full Version : Drunk Street kid grabbed my bike on Hawthorne Bridge


pdxdanc
06-30-2008, 09:36 PM
Happened about 7:30pm tonight. I was riding west, had pretty much just gotten on, when someone grabbed my bike and pushed me towards the road. Luckily I maintained my balance. I stopped, yelled, swore, then his friend started coming towards me threatening me. I started biking west again, feeling outnumbered and out of breath (I'm not in great shape and the altercation had my heart beating fast). I got to about the middle of the bridge and stopped, and looked back and I didn't see them. I checked my current inventory of things to beat the living crap out of them with, and, finding it lacking, and thinking better of being violent, I called 911. As I started talking with the police about this, I saw a police motorcycle with his lights on at the east end of the bridge. Figuring this was probably related, I biked back down east, and saw another bicyclist there, the motorcycle policeman, and the kid sitting down with handcuffs on. Within a minute another car pulled up, then a minute or two later about 2 or 3 more. The other bicyclist's story was similar to mine, except I think his front wheel may have actually gone onto the road from the push.

Since he had an open bottle of alcohol, and the policeman had seen the kid push the other bicyclist, we had the choice of letting the kid sit in the drunk tank and that be it, or press charges. The other bicyclist wanted to press charges, so I am also. The policemen were not sure if the charges would be harassment or the more serious, as I understand it, menacing behavior (or something with the word menacing in it).

PDXGS
06-30-2008, 10:19 PM
The other bicyclist wanted to press charges, so I am also. The policemen were not sure if the charges would be harassment or the more serious, as I understand it, menacing behavior (or something with the word menacing in it).

Excellent....what about an assault charge?
I'm glad neither of you were injured and I'm glad this thug will get some time to dry out, albeit shortlived.

wsbob
06-30-2008, 10:25 PM
pdxdanc, lucky break, you managing to ward off getting rolled. Keep us posted on the how the case against the kid goes. It would be interesting to know how his situation and his record might have figured into the decision to do this kind of crime. Doesn't sound like something a member of a bike theft ring would do, if there is such a thing in ptown. I used to know some street kids. Most of them are gone now, but there's always a new, desparate group coming along.

pdxdanc
06-30-2008, 11:31 PM
Thanks for the support. I think they didn't go with an assault charge because we weren't injured.

The police officer called about 2 hours ago and gave me the case number and the phone number for the da to call in the morning. He said the person was blaming the bicyclists for coming at him, and the officer also said the person was combative in the jail. This is the officer that seemed somewhat ambivalent about pressing charges at the scene, but when he called he wholeheartedly supported it based on the individual's poor behavior in the jail and unrepentant attitude. Definitely glad I'm pressing charges, even if he just gets probation. I'd be willing to bet he will not do this again.

wsbob
06-30-2008, 11:50 PM
pdxdanc, interesting details already. Sounds familiar. I think it's good that you're proceeding with this. Maybe it'll help turn him around before he seriously hurts someone, putting him in prison for a long time.

K'Tesh
07-01-2008, 12:51 AM
Thanks for the support. I think they didn't go with an assault charge because we weren't injured.


Unwanted physical contact, that could have ended with you in the road run over?

Assault, and at least reckless endangerment come to mind. PRESS CHARGES!!! Do not let the officer determine your actions, YOU can initiate a citizens arrest! Go to the BTA's office and get the action pamphlet, or you can go to Swanson, Thomas, and Coon's Law office or website and get it and Pedal Power. Read up on this, follow through... (and keep us posted).

A.O. you got any opinon on this?

Glad to hear you and the other cyclist are ok.

Rubberside Down!
K'Tesh

All that written then I really read your post... please do follow through.

wyeast
07-01-2008, 08:47 AM
I'd be willing to bet he will not do this again.
Sad truth is he probably will, however. The sort who are continuing to be combative on the way to the holding cell tend to be the types who go right back to it as soon as they get out.

djasonpenney
07-01-2008, 08:57 AM
Go for the felony -- ORS 164.135(1)(a). There's nothing in the statute that says the vehicle has to be motorized.

164.135 Unauthorized use of a vehicle. (1) A person commits the crime of unauthorized use of a vehicle when:

(a) The person takes, operates, exercises control over, rides in or otherwise uses another’s vehicle, boat or aircraft without consent of the owner;

(b) Having custody of a vehicle, boat or aircraft pursuant to an agreement between the person or another and the owner thereof whereby the person or another is to perform for compensation a specific service for the owner involving the maintenance, repair or use of such vehicle, boat or aircraft, the person intentionally uses or operates it, without consent of the owner, for the person’s own purpose in a manner constituting a gross deviation from the agreed purpose; or

(c) Having custody of a vehicle, boat or aircraft pursuant to an agreement with the owner thereof whereby such vehicle, boat or aircraft is to be returned to the owner at a specified time, the person knowingly retains or withholds possession thereof without consent of the owner for so lengthy a period beyond the specified time as to render such retention or possession a gross deviation from the agreement.

(2) Unauthorized use of a vehicle, boat or aircraft is a Class C felony.

(3) Subsection (1)(a) of this section does not apply to a person who rides in or otherwise uses a public transit vehicle, as defined in ORS 166.116, if the vehicle is being operated by an authorized operator within the scope of the operator’s employment. [1971 c.743 §134; 2001 c.851 §1; 2007 c.71 §50]

Attornatus_Oregonensis
07-01-2008, 09:01 AM
Crimes:

ORS 163.160. Assault in the fourth degree.
(1) A person commits the crime of assault in the fourth degree if the person: (a) intentionally, knowingly or recklessly causes physical injury to another...

ORS 163.190. Menacing.
(1) A person commits the crime of menacing if by word or conduct the person intentionally attempts to place another person in fear of imminent serious physical injury.

ORS 163.195. Recklessly endangering another person.
(1) A person commits the crime of recklessly endangering another person if the person recklessly engages in conduct which creates a substantial risk of serious physical injury to another person.

ORS 166.065. Harassment.
(1) A person commits the crime of harassment if hte person intentionally:
(a) Harasses or annoys another person by:
(A) Subjecting such other person to offensive physical contact.

And finally:

ORS 133.225. Arrest by a private person.
(1) A private person may arrest another person for any crime committed in the presence of the private person if the private person has probable cause to believe the arrested person committed the crime. A private person making such an arrest shall, without unnecessary delay, take the arrested person before a magistrate or deliver the arrested person to a peace officer.
(2) In order to make the arrest a private person may use physical force as is justifiable under ORS 161.255.

My guess is that you can't get Assault IV here because it requires "physical injury" and I don't remember reading anything about that in the original post. Between menacing and recklessly endangering it sounds like menacing is the more appropriate charge because the conduct was "intentional." All three of those charges are Class A misdemeanors, carrying a maximum sentence of 1 year in jail.

By the way, all this information is available in Ray Thomas' Pedal Power. It's a great book for cyclists, and I highly recommend it.

wsbob
07-01-2008, 11:35 AM
wyeast, sadly, you may be right. I didn't want to say it, but there's a lot of people around that feel they've reached the point where they've got nothing to lose. Might as well spend time locked up where it's not too cold, dry, and they get fed regularly. This kid might be one of those. A person that didn't want to get caught wouldn't do something so conspicuous.

flying_dutchman
07-01-2008, 02:37 PM
A coworker of mine (I’ll call him Bob) was bicycling home during the commute challenge last year, and along the north end of the riverfront park, under the cherry trees, a street kid forced Bob into a crash that took them both down. A swarm of street kids surrounded the incident and Bob’s bike was stolen. The next day at work Bob was pretty trashed, the crash left him with road rash, and impact in the tangle of bikes bruised his face pretty bad.

There are some bad people out there. Even if it just calling 911, or taking pictures, we need to watch out for one another.

eagerdrone
07-02-2008, 07:02 PM
Not sure if I remember correctly, but this last Sunday, June 29th around 3PM(?) a scroungy looking young guy (17-early 20's) was trying to high-five all the bicyclists on the Hawthorne. White kid, blond or sandy hair, about 5'-10. He was walking West and we were biking East. I had just passed another cyclist when I noticed the guy about 50 feet in front of me yelling at cyclists, waving his arms at them, reaching his arms out into close proximity to their path of travel. As I went by he was yelling "good job good job yeah," over and over again.

"What an idiot" was all I thought of the incident at the time, but your subject line reminded me of it.

Be careful out there. I'd hate to be pushed between the bottom of a car and the grating on the Hawthorne. Drunk homeless kids are as bad as soccer mom/dad w/ cell phone; fortunately the drunk kids don't seem as frequent.

Cruizer
07-04-2008, 01:18 AM
What a relief you and the other cyclist were not injured. I've often thought how awful it would be if someone pushed me off the sidewalk and onto the car lane but I thought I was just being paranoid. There are some sick people out there.

Thank you for pursuing charges. You are helping to make things safer for all of us.

pdxdanc
08-13-2008, 09:35 AM
flying_dutchman - scary.
eagerdrone - could have been the same kid, except this one just seemed like a stupid jerk, not just an idiot.

I guess the moral is be aware of your surroundings.

Thanks to everyone for their support and friendly words. I appreciate it!

Just wanted to post to let everyone know how this was resolved. We did press charges, and he pleaded guilty to 2 counts of menacing, and two counts of ... I'm pretty sure it was reckless endangerment. It could have been up to 4 years, but they reached a plea agreement that put him in jail for 40 days, including time served, two years probation, some kind of rehabilitation counseling, and no contact with myself or the other person he pushed, who turned out to be a prosecutor who had worked in the exact courtroom. We both showed up for the hearing, gave statements, and the judge gave sentencing. The kid was, of course, not in any way apologetic, but that was expected. The key is to make it painful so he thinks twice next time. Having seen kids like this over the years, the prosecutor (the one who was pushed) told me he figured the kid would be back because of the discipline involved in going to rehab. We will see. We arranged to be notified if he ends up back in court.

Thanks for the followup - K'Tesh

djasonpenney
08-13-2008, 10:35 AM
I'm glad that this is behind you now. I still feel it's an important message to send that bicycle theft is a class C felony; did the DA say why they didn't pursue this charge?

164.135 Unauthorized use of a vehicle. (1) A person commits the crime of unauthorized use of a vehicle when:
(a) The person takes, operates, exercises control over, rides in or otherwise uses another’s vehicle, boat or aircraft without consent of the owner;
(b) Having custody of a vehicle, boat or aircraft pursuant to an agreement between the person or another and the owner thereof whereby the person or another is to perform for compensation a specific service for the owner involving the maintenance, repair or use of such vehicle, boat or aircraft, the person intentionally uses or operates it, without consent of the owner, for the person’s own purpose in a manner constituting a gross deviation from the agreed purpose; or
(c) Having custody of a vehicle, boat or aircraft pursuant to an agreement with the owner thereof whereby such vehicle, boat or aircraft is to be returned to the owner at a specified time, the person knowingly retains or withholds possession thereof without consent of the owner for so lengthy a period beyond the specified time as to render such retention or possession a gross deviation from the agreement.
(2) Unauthorized use of a vehicle, boat or aircraft is a Class C felony.
(3) Subsection (1)(a) of this section does not apply to a person who rides in or otherwise uses a public transit vehicle, as defined in ORS 166.116, if the vehicle is being operated by an authorized operator within the scope of the operator’s employment. [1971 c.743 §134; 2001 c.851 §1; 2007 c.71 §50]


Just wanted to post to let everyone know how this was resolved.

Attornatus_Oregonensis
08-13-2008, 02:50 PM
I still feel it's an important message to send that bicycle theft is a class C felony

It's not. A bicycle is a vehicle only for purposes of the vehicle code. ORS 814.400(2)(a). That definition does not apply to the criminal code.

djasonpenney
08-13-2008, 03:28 PM
ORS 814.400(2)(a) does not limit the characterization of a bicycle as a vehicle for the vehicle code only; it indicates that a bicycle is indeed covered by the vehicle code.

To contrast, ORS 164 does not have a definition of a vehicle, though it's interesting to note that the term motor vehicle is used in many places, but not in 164.135.

Is there case law that excludes bicycles from the criminal code?

It's not. A bicycle is a vehicle only for purposes of the vehicle code. ORS 814.400(2)(a). That definition does not apply to the criminal code.

Attornatus_Oregonensis
08-13-2008, 04:04 PM
Expressio unius est exclusio alterius.

whiney
08-13-2008, 04:53 PM
Expressio unius est exclusio alterius.

For the rest of us:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Statutory_interpretation

Expressio unius est exclusio alterius (The express mention of one thing excludes all others)
Items not on the list are assumed not to be covered by the statute. However, sometimes a list in a statute is illustrative, not exclusionary. This is usually indicated by a word such as "includes."

wsbob
08-13-2008, 09:49 PM
pdxdanc, glad you followed through on this. It takes a lot of personal time to do that. Did you ever find out anything more about the kid?; what kind of person he might have been at one one time, his record, or anything that would show he might have a chance of making a turn-a-round? I read he's assigned some rehab. I don't think pain alone can be severe enough to stop certain people from doing terrible things. For some of them, pain becomes their life ethic. When that happens, they're screwed forever unless some major revelation comes their way.