View Full Version : Attack on Sellwood Bridge

02-21-2007, 06:16 PM
Just want to get this out there. My wife was attacked this evening, approximately 6:55 by a member of the Red Lizard Running Club, on the Sellwood Bridge, during her evening commute from work, for riding her bicycle. A "gentelman", she says, who was around 40ish, hit her, then pulled her off of her bike, and slapped her across the face, knocking her mirror into the river. From what I understand there were several circumstances surounding the attack but NONE condones the use of force to make your point. Thank YOU member of the Red Lizard Running Club you made my wife a joy to be around this evening....

So, it's just not cars you have to be careful about out there.

02-21-2007, 08:25 PM
was she riding on the sidewalk?

02-21-2007, 09:18 PM
i have no idea what was going on, but i imagine that she was on the sidewalk. that being said, who the ef does this guy think he is. that sidewalk is narrow, and bikes have a right to both the sidewalk and the roadway due to the poor planning while the bridge was built.
if cyclists do ride on the sidewalk, please do so slowly and dont expect to do 20 mph on it. when i cross this bridge, i ride on the road, but i also ride 15 mph up and 30 down. i would encourage everyone who rides to use the road. the one time i rode on the sidwalk i felt like i was going to be blown over the rail. most drivers will either wait, or they will pass safely. I dont let them pass closely because i take the lane.

02-21-2007, 09:38 PM
Yes she was on the sidewalk. The runners mostly stopped to let her and another rider by but one hit her as she rolled by slowly. She responded to him and the guy ran up behind her and drug her off of the bike and struck her. Seems there were about 20 people in the running group and he was the only one that reacted negatively to her being on the sidewalk. I personally think it's safer in the road but everyone has to learn the hard way. She'll ride the road from now on.

02-22-2007, 07:51 AM
That is crazy, I can't believe that. I ride the Sellwood bridge almost twice daily and occasionally walk it. That's just egregious that no one stopped the man in the group of TWENTY people. I have never had any problems with anyone on the bridge (I often do the sidewalk) and always make sure to say thank you to any walkers (or bikers) who move over to let me by. I also let others by half the time as well.

Did your wife call the police?

02-22-2007, 08:16 AM
No, she didn't call the police. The incident happened so fast she didn't have time to do much but get upset. She's doing better this morning, just a fat lip, but she didn't want to get on the bike. The plan is for me to accompany her to work each morning she rides and to meet her and ride home with her at the end of the day until her confidence comes back.

Matt P.
02-22-2007, 11:03 AM
I hope she recovers her confidence quickly, and if no one in that group had the courage to call that guy out to his face in front of others, I hope they at least had the courage to do so privately. Circumstances aside, assault is not justifiable.

I've ridden the Sellwood home twice, both times on the sidewalk. In both cases, the other cyclists and pedestrians I encountered were courteous, and we all practiced the same code used when driving a car in the mountains - yield to the person coming downhill. If there was any doubt, I pulled over to the side to let the other person pass. Generally others did too. I find it shocking that any running club wouldn't have similar manners. Then again, I don't really understand the running mindset.

If you have the time and inclination, write a letter to the neighborhood association describing the incident. I don't think they'd act on it, but if the neighborhood is made aware of it, maybe some of the people who walk that bridge daily will help socially police it. The best way to discourage any public behavior is to keep the locals aware and involved, if possible.

Jonathan Maus
02-22-2007, 11:08 AM

thanks for sharing this story. two things come to mind.

--We need the Sellwood Bridge replaced/improved!

--And most importantly, please have your wife call and report the incident to the police. This must be on record. Stats like this can help us make our case politically in many ways.

02-22-2007, 11:57 AM
This mans behavior is absolutely ridiculous and shouldn't be tolerated under any circumstances.
I'd like to cross-post this to the Red Lizzard forums page http://www.redlizardrunning.com/forums/index.phpand see if anyone has the integrity to serve up this SOBs name so that he can face some sort of justice.
Assault is assault. Portland PD should also be contacted. This person should be taken off our streets until he demonstrates that he is up to the task of behaving like a civil human being.
What an ass.

Matt P.
02-22-2007, 01:00 PM
The Club's President just posted this on their forum:

"A woman claims to have been assaulted by a member of our club last night on the Sellwood Bridge. A couple club members did stop to assist her soon after the incident, but sadly, the alleged attack is being linked to the club. Since the club has been named in the bike forums, I wanted to make this statement in a public forum:

- we have no reason at this time to suspect a club member was involved
- we will happily cooperate with any investigation (if there is one)
- if a club member was involved and found liable, appropriate action will be taken
- any inquiries or feedback should be directed to Torrey: torrey@redlizardrunning.com "

02-22-2007, 08:22 PM
"I personally think it's safer in the road but everyone has to learn the hard way. She'll ride the road from now on."

What happens when she forgets to do the dishes?

02-22-2007, 10:54 PM
+1 on the advice for police report.. although i understand if she chooses otherwise. i wish there were a way to ensure her that this was an odd occurance.

i used to ride the bridge daily and i don't know what is the best way to cross it.
i always rode the street for no better reason than there was a sign stating cyclists had to walk bikes on the sidewalk... which is probably the safest route.
it was more often than not that a car would honk or drive excessively aggro around me when i crossed using the street... cars seemed to think a bike should be on the sidewalk in spite of the sign warning them of "bicycles on roadway" not 100 feet from the bridge entrance...

...and on a related safety note regarding sellwood bridge, everyone please take care to mind thier speed if they cross from sellwood heading to LO (or riverview cemetary)... that 270 degree turn in the wet is slick as hell and more than one i have pitched the bike sideways in with a car on my arse.