Esplanade closure begins February 1st

45 days in jail for man who drove with someone on his hood

Posted by on November 17th, 2008 at 12:28 pm

oregonian front page-1.jpg

The Oregonian on July 15th, 2008.

KGW reports that James Millican, who ran down and then drove with Jason Rehnberg on his hood after Rehnberg (who was on his bike) told him to slow down, has been sentenced to 45 days in jail.

Along with jail, the 21-year-old Millican must do 160 hours of community service, pay Rehnberg $800 for lost wages, and be on probation for three years. Millican was charged with unlawful use of a weapon, DUI, and attempted assault (second degree).

Story continues below


James Millican gets 45 days
in jail, probation and community

According to KGW, Millican told the judge this morning that he had been drinking (he had a .11 blood-alcohol level) and that “he snapped” when Rehnberg called him a name.

“I was on a short fuse. Him calling me an [expletive] broke the camel’s back.”

KGW reports that Rehberg also admits he “could have acted differently”:

“When you’re out there on a bike, you’re vulnerable. It’s hard not to react.”

Read the full story at

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  • BikingViking November 17, 2008 at 12:36 pm

    Justice is served! Nice to hear that both participants admit their mistakes in escalating the matter.

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  • brewcaster November 17, 2008 at 12:49 pm

    Was this not attempted murder? Come on.

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  • Lynne November 17, 2008 at 12:53 pm

    But yet, he still gets to keep his license?

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  • Matt Haughey November 17, 2008 at 12:56 pm

    I really wish the drunk driver could have gotten his license privileges revoked for a year, if only so he could become a cyclist himself and know what his victim has to put up with day in and day out.

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  • Duncan Watson November 17, 2008 at 1:15 pm

    Justice is served?!? Are you kidding me? If this hadn’t been caught on camera it probably would have been even less of a sentence.

    We need to start taking vehicular assault seriously. The perp needs to lose his license, and serve real time, as well as be vulnerable to civil suits arising from the incidents. At least these are felony charges, though calling it attempted assault is absurd.

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  • Brian November 17, 2008 at 1:48 pm

    Justice served. You really think this is fair?!?! Or Just?

    This guy deserves much more. This is the weak justice that makes the roads so dangerous for all users.

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  • Quincy November 17, 2008 at 2:05 pm

    Justice my hairy ass!
    Am I the only one that is shocked and dismayed at this complete failure of the justice system? What the hell? This guy has proven that he is incapable of handling a motor vehicle in a responsible fashion and should not be allowed behind a wheel for many years. It is frightening that vehicular assault = a mere 45 days of incarceration.

    Be careful out there people.

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  • toddistic November 17, 2008 at 2:28 pm

    wait, so i can go get drunk, get in my car, drive around, get mad and take someone for a ride on the hood of my car for only 45 days in jail?

    lady justice is a whore!

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  • Graham November 17, 2008 at 2:33 pm


    Let’s imagine this as an assault with a weapon that’s equally dangerous. That would be what, a baseball bat? Gun? Artillery round? Whatever, what would be the sentence then?

    We really have the craziest blind spot when it comes to cars as weapons. Because the vast majority of us drive them, most of us feel like we need them, and we loooove that powerful feeling they give us.

    This guy should never be allowed to drive, ever again.

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  • JP November 17, 2008 at 2:41 pm

    I know a (at the time) 15 year old boy who went into a store with his b.b gun to rob it. He spent 5 1/2 years in jail due to the measure 11 law. I don’t think I need to spell out the rest of my point.

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  • Tbird November 17, 2008 at 3:53 pm

    In truly bike friendly societies, y’know where I mean….DUI gets a one year revocation on first offense. Second offense, and / or assaulting cyclist with a car gets a lifetime ban.
    Just sayin’…

    Nice to see platinum Portland is protecting it’s cyclists.

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  • Ron November 17, 2008 at 4:32 pm

    I’m going to buy a gun and get a concealed weapons permit. .45 auto should about do it, with armor piercing bullets to penetrate the front windshield.

    Bicyclists for Justice, anyone?

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  • James Ceccorulli November 17, 2008 at 4:46 pm

    Assault with a deadly weapon? It seems that he did more than attempt to assault Rehnberg.

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  • Kevin November 17, 2008 at 5:03 pm

    When and if motor vehicle operators are ever held truly responsible for their actions THEN it will be safer to be a cyclist.

    Did Brett Jarolimek and Tracey Sparling die without the society learning a lesson????

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  • Paul November 17, 2008 at 5:21 pm

    The driver will be sued into the ground and no decent employer will hire him in the future.

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  • Joe November 17, 2008 at 6:46 pm

    Driving while intoxicated should not be tolerated. A car is a deadly weapon. No question about it.

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  • Brian Johnson November 17, 2008 at 9:18 pm

    So if Millican had been in possession of a firearm at the time he “snapped” what would have become of Rehnberg?

    Assault with an automotive is assault with a deadly weapon. What was his intent in ramming Rehnberg? Was he trying to hurt Rehnberg? Kill him?

    His sentence was lenient.

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  • John Russell November 17, 2008 at 9:21 pm

    “unlawful use of a weapon”
    Finally they see cars for what they truly are, yet he walks away still holding his license.

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  • ignatz November 18, 2008 at 6:14 am

    No way! 45 days for trying to kill a guy with his car?!?! Is there more to this story that’s missing? Why so lenient? And how was this caught on tape? Where I used to live, if you blow .08 your license is revoked. Blowing .11 with a cyclist on your hood ought to get you revocation and attempted murder plus some sort of community jackass award. I bet if Millican was walking and I intentionally plowed him with my xtracycle, I’d get more than 45 days, especially if I was drinking. I don’t know what name Rehberg called this moron but my guess is, it was totally appropriate. What an a$%&@!e.

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  • Duncan November 18, 2008 at 7:49 am

    as I recall the DMV can adminstratively revoke his liscence if they feel he is a threat to others- maybe we should all send an ltter to the DMV about how we feel that someone who has assault bicyclist driving around?

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  • Greg November 18, 2008 at 8:04 am

    His license is suspended for year as a result of the DUII conviction.

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  • Paul Tay November 18, 2008 at 8:17 am

    Ron, #12, ditto, fo’ shure! Judge needs another sentencing option: three-year ban from operating a motor vehicle, for the duration of probation.

    Duncan, #20, ya got that petition goin?

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  • Andy November 18, 2008 at 9:13 am

    I’m pretty sure conviction of a DUI results in a 1 year suspension of your license (at least, that’s according to the DMV).

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  • Stochelo November 18, 2008 at 9:23 am

    What’s all this about driver accountability–if drivers were held accountable for their actions, this just wouldn’t be America anymore!

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  • Kevin November 18, 2008 at 10:40 am

    I couldn’t help but notice in the video where the driver slammed on the brakes at the intersection deliberately trying to eject Jason into the busy cross-traffic IN ORDER TO KILL HIM. 45 days seems pretty light for that.

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  • Evan November 18, 2008 at 12:09 pm

    …unlawful use of a weapon, DUI, and attempted assault (second degree).

    Attempted assault? Did I miss something? Did he try to hit him with his car but missed because he was too drunk?

    All that and only 45 days of time?
    What would have happened if he had done all that but not been behind the wheel? The penalty probably would have been worse!

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  • Jen November 19, 2008 at 11:36 am

    Who do we call?

    Who do we contact?

    What are our next steps?

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  • Cyclists vs. the law (and the hood of a car) November 20, 2008 at 3:22 pm

    […] to a police report). There’s video of the end of the incident below. Commenters in several places have said that the sentence seems a little light — but of course there’s always someone […]

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  • Lee November 24, 2008 at 8:07 am

    He still keeps his license?

    Are you kidding?

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