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Bike-mounted State Trooper pedals down reckless driver

Posted by on October 2nd, 2008 at 12:23 pm

Here’s an unusual bike story that just landed in my inbox from the Oregon State Police.

“The incident happened Wednesday, October 1st, in Salem at about 1:00 p.m. when OSP Trooper Perry Rhoades was patrolling the Capitol Mall area on a bicycle and spotted a 1997 Ford four-door drive recklessly near the State Capitol building nearly striking pedestrians in a crosswalk on Court Street near Winter Street.

Trooper Rhoades caught up with the car and made several attempts to get the driver to stop, including riding alongside the driver’s door and ordering the female driver to stop. The driver, identified as SUZANNE L. FUTRELL, age 44, from Dallas, refused to stop and yelled through her rolled up window she didn’t do anything wrong.

FUTRELL allegedly continued driving in a reckless manner including driving through a red light as Trooper Rhoades continued to try and get her to stop as speeds were estimated about 25 mph.

Several people in the area saw and heard the trooper’s attempts to get the car stopped, including a man on a bicycle who joined in to help. OSP Superintendent Tim McLain and Captain Gerry Gregg were in an unmarked patrol car in the area, helping get the car stopped in a downtown Salem parking lot on Liberty Street near Marion Street about six blocks from where the incident began.

FUTRELL was taken into custody without further incident. A search of the car led to the discovery of less than an ounce of marijuana and several medications. FUTRELL was transported to Marion County Jail for booking on the following charges:

    Reckless Driving
    Felony Attempt to Elude in a Vehicle
    Unlawful Possession of a Controlled Substance
    Possession of less than an Ounce of Marijuana

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  • K'Tesh October 2, 2008 at 3:58 pm

    Good to hear that nobody was hurt…

    Hope the driver gets a LONG time to get her head on straight, and never gets behind the wheel again.

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  • Matthew Denton October 2, 2008 at 4:09 pm

    Very nice work. Especially on a police bicycle, those things look heavy.

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  • a.O October 2, 2008 at 4:24 pm

    At least she didn’t hit a cyclist – that would have knocked out the reckless driving charge.

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  • dan October 2, 2008 at 5:33 pm

    Unfortunately, that’s one for cyclists, about one million for motorists who got away with it.

    Kudos to the officer; usually the bike cops I see here in PDX don’t look all that steady on their bikes, maybe the OSP has a higher standard?

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  • Kt October 2, 2008 at 7:32 pm

    Way to go, Trooper, Rhoades!! And unnamed cyclist who tried to help!

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  • Opus the Poet October 2, 2008 at 11:56 pm

    Umm, you guys can keep her, we don’t need her back in Dallas. We have more than enough violent stoner drivers without her.

    And awesome deal for the bike cop.

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  • Coyote October 3, 2008 at 10:16 am

    Opus, wrong Dallas. Dallas, Oregon is a bedroom community to Salem. We also have an Austin and a Brownsville too. Not to mention Detroit, Peoria, Jacksonville, Charleston et. al.

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  • Fredlf October 3, 2008 at 2:14 pm

    You know, my inner jackass has always wondered if I could out-ride a bike cop. Now I know the answer: no.

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  • Graham October 3, 2008 at 4:20 pm

    Way to go, Trooper Rhoades!

    We need local bike cops to take the trooper’s example to heart, and start patrolling the local bikeways. I would suggest: plainclothes, with helmet-cam rolling, and automotive back-up. Then just cruise up and down, say, SE Salmon, where I frequently see drivers blow through stop signs, right in my path. (Now that I think about it, this happens much more so on Salmon than on Lincoln, which is the other bike boulevard I frequent.) Yesterday I saw two infractions: an elderly lady in a PT Cruiser who slow-rolled through a stop sign at a traffic-calming circle (then gave me the classic startled look when she finally noticed me). Then on the way back, there was a car that blew through an intersection like the stop sign wasn’t there. To be fair, the stop sign was slightly covered by an overgrown rose bush, but not so much that a conscious, breathing individual wouldn’t notice it.

    Both of these near-misses were at 2-way stop intersections crossing Salmon, making these infractions extra dangerous to the many cyclists on that road. Cyclists who would likely feel perfectly safe going through these intersections at full speed, because they have the right of way, and no stop sign.

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  • matt picio October 7, 2008 at 6:26 pm

    That is one of the most awesome stories I’ve ever read! Glad no one was hurt, major kudos to State Trooper Rhoades and the other involved OSP officials!

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