Video leads to two citations in case of dangerous pass caught on camera

Posted by on August 25th, 2015 at 2:27 pm

Still from video by Tony Tapay

Chalk up another win for video camera justice.

Tony Tapay caught a dangerous pass on camera last month and — even though there were no police or other witnesses around to see it — he doggedly pursued his case in hopes that the man who nearly hit him and his son would be brought to justice.

Five weeks after the incident occurred the Portland Police have now officially cited Andrew Reid for Careless Driving and Unsafe Passing of a Person Operating a Bicycle.

On July 7th, Tapay, 47, was riding on SE 34th with his 5 and-a-half year old son on the back of his Xtracycle. With his handlebar-mounted camera running, a Kia Soul driven by Reid came whizzing just inches past him and nearly ran head-on into another rider coming in the opposite direction. Tapay’s camera recorded everything, including the car’s license plate number and the driver’s face (after Tapay caught up to him at a traffic signal).

After the incident, Tapay sought help from lawyers Ray Thomas and Charley Gee at Swanson, Thomas, Coon & Newton and began the citizen initiated citation process, a little-known Oregon law that allows anyone to build a case and engage the police retroactively. Tapay began by calling the phone number listed on the Portland Police Bureau Traffic Division’s website; but that was a dead end. “It’s not even for the Traffic Division,” Tapay said, “the person who answered had no clue what I was talking about.”

Tapay shared in an interview today that it was, “Incredibly frustrating to navigate the system.” Despite many phone conversations that led nowhere, he didn’t give up.

Tapay then emailed the officer in charge of his local Neighborhood Response Team. Here’s an excerpt from that email:

“I am writing to you as the SE Neighborhood Response Team Officer. I hope you can help me with a situation with a dangerous driver.

On Tuesday, July 7th, I was riding my bike with my five-year-old son (on the seat behind me), heading south on SE 34th Ave approaching SE Grant. Suddenly I could hear a car approaching from behind me at a very high rate of speed. Despite the fact that we were approaching a speed bump and that there was another person on a bike coming the other way, the car veered around me, completely into the other lane, barely missing the other rider and continued at high speed. It was a VERY dangerous situation on a bike route with a posted speed limit of 25mph. Please note that I was riding along at a pretty good speed. That his pass seemed so fast relative to my speed makes it all the more frightening.

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I continued to Division St. where the car was now stopped at a red light. Considering the danger of the pass, and the fact that he was now caught at the red light, I couldn’t help but roll up to the driver’s side and ask, “Was that really worth it?” To which he responded flippantly, “Yup!” He then accelerated quickly and headed to SE Clinton and took a left.

As our neighborhood officer, would you be willing to cite the driver? If you are not able to can you provide me with a contact of a Portland Police Bureau officer who would be able to?”

“Unfortunately,” that officer wrote in an email on July 17th, “sworn law enforcement officers cannot cite for violations they did not personally observe. They are required to be present at the time of the violation in order to testify to it in court.” While it wasn’t the response he hoped for, that officer encouraged Tapay to call the city’s traffic safety and livability hotline, 823-SAFE.

After leaving a message at 823-SAFE Tapay got a call back from Officer Bill Balzer, a Traffic Division veteran. “He was understandably neutral about it at first. His tone wasn’t particularly encouraging,” Tapay recalled. But then he sent Balzer the video and everything changed.

“After seeing the video he [Officer Balzer] was suddenly very motivated. He said what the guy did was totally dangerous and clearly careless driving.”

Three days later, on August 20th, Officer Balzer called Tapay with the good news. They were able to locate Reid and issued him two traffic citations. According to Tapay, Reid claimed that he had pulled out suddenly in front of his car. Luckily Tapay had a longer video of the incident (watch it here) that clearly disputes that claim. (For what it’s worth, some people on Twitter are calling for the police to cite Tapay for rolling through a stop sign prior to the dangerous pass.)

Reid is scheduled to appear in court on the citations in mid-September.

Tapay told me today that he never thought his $300 Shimano ECM 1000 camera would be used to give someone a citation. “I got it,” he said, “in the event I was ever in a collision there’d be no dispute about what actually happened.” Several years ago Tapay was hit by a woman who ran a red light and she offered a blatantly false story about what transpired.

Tapay hopes his experience makes people think twice about driving dangerously. Back in May, he rolled up on the scene of a tragedy that changed his perspective forever. He saw Mark Angeles’ body lying in the street just moments after the collision.

“It had a profound effect on me. While I hope no one is ever killed again, I think if people had that opportunity to stand there and see that person dead, in the road, they’d understand how real this is. It’s not a game. Driving is not a game.”

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123 Comments
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    9watts August 25, 2015 at 2:38 pm

    Hurray for Tony’s determination.

    Boo for the cop who said this: “sworn law enforcement officers cannot cite for violations they did not personally observe.”
    The cop who gave me a $260 ticket for unsafe passing on the right didn’t see me do anything but was happy to rely on statements from the person behind me who ran a red light with his SUV, whose behavior the cop did observe.

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      Eric August 25, 2015 at 2:42 pm

      Good news! Now who can recommend a good cycle cam?

      9watts: Maybe the officer that gave you the ticket had his fingers crossed when he took that oath.

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        Chris L August 25, 2015 at 9:39 pm

        I love my Rideyes! Hours of battery life and loops over automatically.

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          pdx2wheeler August 26, 2015 at 10:44 am

          I also use RidEye, 100% of the time. Just to add, it also records at 1080p, detects collisions and automatically saves the video evidence from being over-written when it loops over. I used captured images from RidEye just this morning to call out ODOT. Very handy!

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    PNP August 25, 2015 at 2:45 pm

    Excellent! There’s just way too much these days of people not looking out for others. I hope you’ll post the outcome of this when it happens.

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    Scott H August 25, 2015 at 2:46 pm

    What are the fines for careless driving and unsafe passing?

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      LC August 25, 2015 at 3:05 pm

      A lot less than for intimidation and assault, which is more like what actually happened.

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        Scott H August 25, 2015 at 7:44 pm

        Assault? I think you’re watching the wrong video.

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          Scott E August 25, 2015 at 11:53 pm

          Assault is different from Battery. An assault is carried out by a threat of bodily harm coupled with an apparent, present ability to cause the harm. Battery is going through with it. I’m not a lawyer but I think one could argue successfully that what the driver did would fall under the umbrella of assault by this definition.

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            meh August 26, 2015 at 7:37 am

            No such thing as battery in Oregon law. It all comes under assault.

            Assault in the fourth degree = Assault IV (referred to as “assault four”);
            Assault in the third degree = Assault III (referred to as “assault three”);
            Assault in the second degree = Assault II (referred to as “assault two”);
            Assault in the first degree = Assault I (referred to as “assault one”).

            http://oregoncrimes.com/assault.htm

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              Randall S. August 26, 2015 at 9:33 am

              That’s true. It would actually be Menacing.

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            Gary August 26, 2015 at 11:13 am

            You’re talking about civil assault, which is the imminent threat of bodily harm. That’s a lawsuit. In the criminal context in Oregon assault means bodily harm (but there’s menacing, as noted).

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      9watts August 25, 2015 at 3:11 pm

      probably a reprimand.

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      Scott H August 25, 2015 at 3:58 pm

      Oh man, up to 200 hours of community service or up to $12,500, yeah that might curve bad behavior a bit. http://www.oregonlaws.org/ors/2009/811.135

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        9watts August 25, 2015 at 4:10 pm

        Reid getting this Careless Driving citation is so interesting. I’m all for it, but let’s not lose sight of the fact that (a) he didn’t actually hit anyone, and (b) no law enforcement was present. What I’m getting at is that the threshold for receiving a Careless Driving citation appears to have just dropped five floors.

        I recall distinctly having long conversations here three summers ago when Wanda Cortese ran over and very nearly killed Christeen Osborn on Hwy 101 in broad daylight. No one in law enforcement could bring themselves to cite Ms. Cortese for Careless Driving. All she got as far as I recall was a $260 ticket for failing to maintain her lane. I’ve been interested in learning what if anything may have occurred subsequently, both in the legal realm and with respect to Christeen’s recovery but have found exactly nothing.
        http://bikeportland.org/2012/07/17/should-hwy-101-collision-have-trigged-vulnerable-roadway-users-law-74755

        What am I missing? Is this Tapay/Reid situation a fluke, or perhaps a harbinger of a new era of justice?

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          B. Carfree August 25, 2015 at 5:55 pm

          I think what you’re missing is the presence of the five-year old child on the bike in this case. I usually find that motorists give me much more room when I have small children with me and I think that sort of consideration for children extends to people in law enforcement. If it’s just an adult being passed unsafely, they figure you should know what it’s like and harden up. With an innocent child, that reasoning goes out the window.

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              El Biciclero August 26, 2015 at 10:09 am

              I think it depends on who is perceived as committing an offense. In the Aeon article, the mother was accused of illegally crossing the street, and that offense was magnified by the presence of children (this is still an incredible outrage, but in the jury’s view, I guess that’s how they saw it). In Tony’s case here, the driver was the one seen as committing the offense (a few years ago, that could have gone the other way, with some made-up “improper position” charge…).

              I don’t know whether it applies in traffic cases, but in criminal cases, charges are bumped up a level if the crime was allegedly committed in the presence of children (I know someone who was on a grand jury; taking their word for this).

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          Pete August 25, 2015 at 6:29 pm

          A few weeks ago I spoke with a mutual friend of Christeen’s in Hood River who said that her recovery continues. I too would like to know more, and I hope she is able to a) recover fully, and b) get justice for what she’s endured. I’m going to try and arrange an introduction when I’m back there next, if anything as someone who’s thought about her and pulled for her on the sidelines since that horrible incident occurred.

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            9watts August 25, 2015 at 9:19 pm

            Thanks, Pete. Very good to hear at least a shred of information. I’ve pestered Jonathan occasionally over the years about this, figuring he might have some levers to pull the rest of us might not. I’ve emailed the DA several times, but got zilch. Reading up a little on him (Joshua Marquis) I’m not holding my breath.

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          wsbob August 25, 2015 at 8:47 pm

          “…Wanda Cortese ran over and very nearly killed Christeen Osborn on Hwy 101 in broad daylight. No one in law enforcement could bring themselves to cite Ms. Cortese for Careless Driving. All she got as far as I recall was a $260 ticket for failing to maintain her lane. …” watts

          Big difference in the incident involving Tony Tapay and his son, from the one Osborn and Cortese were involved in, is that Tapay had proof: the video footage. Watching the video offers some information similar to what would have been seen by an eyewitness on the scene…maybe better in some ways. If Tapay hadn’t had that video, his efforts to have a citation issued may not have brought any greater result than what’s occurred with Cortese.

          By the way…Excellent work Tony!

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            9watts August 25, 2015 at 9:17 pm

            There were plenty of witnesses to the Hwy 101 crash.
            I don’t think it is reasonable or logical to say, in effect, No cameras? No citation.

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              wsbob August 26, 2015 at 12:03 am

              And were those witnesses stories able to provide police with the type of indication of intent that Tapay’s video was able to provide? Apparently not. Most likely not.

              Read the statutes for what they require in order for a citation to be legitimately issued. Tapay’s footage didn’t just record a guy violating a use of the road rule, it also showed him verbally expressing significant indifference to the safety of other road users.

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                9watts August 26, 2015 at 12:00 pm

                “And were those witnesses stories able to provide police with the type of indication of intent that Tapay’s video was able to provide? Apparently not. Most likely not.”

                I find this all very silly and very ex post. You are in essence saying that now that we have the potential for video evidence mere ocular evidence is now no longer acceptable, adequate, is essentially worthless. I don’t believe anyone in the legal system has made such a claim and your inference strikes me as highly problematic.

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                wsbob August 26, 2015 at 6:52 pm

                “…You are in essence saying that now that we have the potential for video evidence mere ocular evidence is now no longer acceptable, adequate, is essentially worthless. …” watts

                No, what you’ve contrived, is not what I’m saying…it’s what you’re saying.

                If you’ll refer to the statutes…oregonlaws.org…is a good source…and study and compare aspects and details of the incident Tony and his son were involved in, to those of some of the other incidents and collisions of past you refer to, you’ll get some insight into how some circumstances allow citations to be issued, while others don’t.

                Fortunately for everyone but the bad driver, Tony Tapay was very determined to address an example of a serious problem afflicting many neighborhoods: people driving too fast, without due care or respect for other people using the road. This bad behavior attacks neighborhood livability and safety in using the road.

                Even with his determination to get some action taken on this bad driver, it seems Tapay was very lucky in equipping himself with video gear to record the unforeseen. Without that video footage in hand, the police most likely would not have felt they could issue a citation that would stand up in court.

                Problems with bad drivers in people’s neighborhoods, continues. The crummy way bad drivers…and in some cases, bad bicycle riders…conduct themselves in other people’s neighborhoods, is something people should not be forced to endure.

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                El Biciclero August 27, 2015 at 1:57 pm

                I don’t think there is any intent required to be guilty of careless driving; if there were intent on the part of Ms. Cortese, it could be considered assault. If a witness of the Cortese/Osborn crash can place Ms. Osborn on the shoulder, and the citation issued to Ms. Cortese was for failure to remain within her lane (an admission by Law Enforcement that she in fact encroached onto the shoulder—based on…witness testimony? Video evidence?), then the fact that Ms. Osborn was hit while riding on the shoulder should be prima facie evidence that Ms. Cortese was driving “in a manner that endangers or would be likely to endanger any person or property.”

                The careless driving statute does not make mention of whether the driver must know they are driving carelessly (in fact, the definition of “careless” might well imply that the driver doesn’t know they are doing it), it defines “careless driving” in terms of observable behavior (“driving in a manner”), regardless of intent. “Reckless” requires a degree of awareness, but “careless” does not.

                Not that it is relevant here, but the results of the Cortese/Osborn case could easily be construed as a deliberate attempt by law enforcement, et al., to shield Ms. Cortese from the cascade of penalties that would ensue if she were found guilty of careless driving causing injury to a vulnerable road user. Rather than a case of video evidence being “better than” witness testimony, I think the different outcomes of Tony’s and Christeen Osborn’s respective cases comes down to law enforcement discretion.

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                9watts August 27, 2015 at 6:52 pm

                Interesting.
                I do hope we some day get more insights into this case. The basic official findings have always bothered me. Just as the Kunsman/Bohannon excessive speed was not a factor finding always struck me as nothing more than Car-head apologist talk.

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                wsbob August 27, 2015 at 11:08 pm

                You could have found a link to a text of the law to which you refer ‘Careless Driving’, and posted it in your comment for the benefit of everyone reading here, but you didn’t, so here it is:

                http://www.oregonlaws.org/ors/811.135

                Your seem to be contention that Cortese (person driving and involved in a collision to which you’re trying to draw a comparison to the incident Tapay and his son were involved in.) was driving recklessly, raises the question of what exactly the witnesses to that collision did see…and whether what they saw confirms that Cortese had in fact been driving in a manner that met the description of ‘Careless Driving’, included in the text of the aforementioned law.

                You guys better copies of the witnesses’ full testimony of what they saw, and study them closely, before jumping to conclusions about how Cortese was driving.

                The multiple aspects of evidence against this ‘gentleman’, Andrew Reid, arrogantly hot-roddin’ down a neighborhood street, alarmingly close to a guy and his kid on a bike, is solid. Markedly different than details reported here in past bikeportland stories, indicate about the collision in which Cortese was driving.

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                9watts August 28, 2015 at 8:50 am

                “You guys better copies of the witnesses’ full testimony of what they saw, and study them closely, before jumping to conclusions about how Cortese was driving.”
                We’ve covered some of this ground before, but what I’m struggling to understand is how someone in a car running into and over a person (who has the same legal right to be in the road) in the middle of a sunny day on a straight stretch, is not prima facie evidence of carelessness (by any definition of that word)? Had she exercised care she would have seen Osborn and stayed in her lane. Why make this complicated?

                For that matter I’d like to think that even at dusk and on a road with curves (Kerry Kunsman) the same standards would be upheld.

                Because if we don’t, then how is this any different than open season?

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                El Biciclero August 28, 2015 at 10:05 am

                “You could have found a link to a text of the law to which you refer ‘Careless Driving’, and posted it in your comment for the benefit of everyone reading here, but you didn’t…”

                Sorry, I figured your mention of “level of intent” meant you were already familiar with the laws in question.

                “Your seem to be contention that Cortese…was driving recklessly, raises the question of what exactly the witnesses to that collision did see”

                NOT “recklessly”, “carelessly”. Since there is a legal distinction, we shouldn’t confuse the two. Even “reckless” does not necessarily require intent, but merely awareness and conscious disregard of a substantial and unjustifiable risk, which must be of such nature and degree that disregard thereof constitutes a gross deviation from the standard of care that a reasonable person would observe in the situation.

                In Tony’s case, the video (actually, the audio) evidence points to the fact that the driver was aware of and also consciously disregarded a risk of some type. I would think the only thing keeping this from being “reckless” is the perceived “nature and degree” of the risk. The driver’s attitude was one of recklessness, but the level of the actual risk was not deemed to be “unjustifiable” to the extent that disregarding it constituted a “gross deviation” from the standard of care.

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                wsbob August 28, 2015 at 10:53 am

                “…I’m struggling to understand is how someone in a car running into and over a person (who has the same legal right to be in the road) in the middle of a sunny day on a straight stretch, is not prima facie evidence of carelessness (by any definition of that word)? …” watts

                It seems the law requires more to confirm that a violation has occurred, than the simple criteria you’re suggesting; there’s a need to know ‘why’. For example, I’m thinking typically that on scene officers, investigators, witnesses, will be looking for signs from people involved in a collision, or the scene itself, that may help to explain why the collision occurred. Possibly long list, but obviously on it: intoxication, fatigue, emotion, physical competence, and so on. Check the police paperwork for the collision Cortese collision, see what’s in there.

                Bic…remember, this comment section is a public forum comment section rather than a personal email format. Not everyone reading here may be familiar with the laws referred to; providing the link is for them.

                By the way, I did mean to write ‘carelessly’ rather than ‘recklessly’ (too late, too much ‘fun’ earlier in the day. I think the same reasoning probably applies as I noted to watts above…which is that the way the law is written, the question of ‘why’ has to be answered before a citation can be issued. Once Tapay for the incident he was involved in, brought the video forward, it was relatively easy to do that. In the collision involving Cortese and Osborne, the criteria may have been much harder to meet.

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                9watts August 28, 2015 at 11:23 am

                OK, wsbob.
                Why is the ‘why’ so all-important?

                I know that you have consistently been very interested in the ‘why’ in all of these cases when we’ve discussed them, engaged in our version of forensics. But I remain interested to learn from you why it is essential to understand why someone came to endanger another person with their car? Are you suggesting that there is a (presumably small) class of reasons that rightfully end up in the careless hopper, and another (presumably much larger) class of reasons that do not/should not? Are you holding out for the ‘her front tire blew out at the very moment she was overtaking the person on a bike’ exoneration? Some mechanical incidence or act of God that would suggest the absence of assignable culpability?
                I suspect law enforcement is also inclined to hold out this hope, to imagine an overly broad sweep of (generally unstated) reasons why someone might innocently mow down another person with their car, but I remain chagrined that this would be so.

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                wsbob August 28, 2015 at 6:00 pm

                “…But I remain interested to learn from you why it is essential to understand why someone came to endanger another person with their car? …” bic

                Asking and getting answers to the question ‘why’, is central to determining whether an incident or collision was accidental, or due to intoxication, careless driving or reckless driving.

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                wsbob August 28, 2015 at 6:01 pm

                sorry…previous post in response to watt’s comment.

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          meh August 26, 2015 at 7:39 am

          I think the video of the incident comes a irrefutable evidence of what occurred, not just a witness describing the event.

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            9watts August 26, 2015 at 11:55 am

            by that logic why would ‘just a police officer describing it’ be so different, so much better?

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        Spiffy August 25, 2015 at 4:37 pm

        those files are only if a vulnerable road user is injured…

        Class B traffic violation minimum fine $130 with a maximum of $1000… presumptive fine being $260…

        I’d guess the fine will be higher than $260 because they endangered 2 vulnerable users, showed no remorse for their behavior, and lied to the police about what happened…

        http://courts.oregon.gov/Coos/docs/general_orders/misc/2012_violation_fine_schedule.pdfv

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          gutterbunnybikes August 25, 2015 at 7:03 pm

          That’s 3 vulnerable road users – Mr. Tapay, his child, and the other unknown bicycle rider coming the other way.

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            KristenT August 26, 2015 at 11:32 am

            I thought the VRU law only came into effect on streets posted at 35mph and above? I’m having trouble finding info in the ORS, can anyone help me out here?

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              El Biciclero August 26, 2015 at 12:07 pm

              You’re thinking of the requirements for safe passing distance, which only apply at speeds over 35 and in the absence of a bike lane. For the VRU rule, I believe it is contained in paragraphs (3) – (6) of ORS 811.135.

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                KristenT August 27, 2015 at 10:28 am

                Thank you!!!

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      Randall S. August 26, 2015 at 9:32 am

      It looks like $300 each, but that’s assuming they’re not simply overturned in traffic court.

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    Indy August 25, 2015 at 2:51 pm

    What’s up with the crappy resolution on that video? That Camera is very pricey, capable of Full HD resolution recording.

    Dude should utilize the camera to its full effects. Lotta important details can be captured in HD and beyond.

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      gutterbunnybikes August 26, 2015 at 6:35 am

      Online streaming is problematic in higher rez. And the original recording might have been higher rez and edited for online display.

      Ever try uploading a 1080+ to youtube? Takes forever.

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      resopmok August 26, 2015 at 7:42 am

      I might be wrong but my understanding is that higher quality recording means significantly less battery and storage space. Better to record the whole ride than not get the part you need and have it all be hi-res.

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        Spiffy August 26, 2015 at 7:56 am

        my $100 Swann HD records 2 hours of 1080p in a continuous loop on a 16 GB memory card before the battery dies…

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    Lester Burnham August 25, 2015 at 2:52 pm

    Would have loved to have seen Andrew Reid’s face when he received the citation.

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      Dan M. August 27, 2015 at 5:55 pm

      Would love to see Andrew Reid’s face up close – My clenched fist.

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    Todd Hudson August 25, 2015 at 3:04 pm

    What are the legal ramifications of audio/video recordings in public, where conversations like the one between Tapay and that unkind motorist? Oregon requires mutual consent for recording audio conversations, but I don’t know the nuances and exceptions to this law, how it could apply to bike cameras, and what it could mean when they are used as evidence.

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      Paul Atkinson August 25, 2015 at 4:41 pm

      I think* Oregon does not require mutual consent. So long as one participating party gives consent you’re good to go (i.e., you may record a conversation you’re involved in but you may not secretly record a conversation between two other people).

      * I am neither a lawyer nor an expert, but I did look into this at one point

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        B. Carfree August 25, 2015 at 5:59 pm

        Actually, it’s not consent that counts it’s notice. All parties must be made aware that audio recording is taking place. Video is fine without notice, I believe.

        Like you, I’m not a lawyer and I also looked this up a while back. We also had a case locally involving a cop who was recording who then objected to the person he had pulled over also recording without notice. The court ruled that since the cop was recording, no notice of any other recording device was necessary.

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          Pete August 25, 2015 at 6:41 pm

          This is exactly why I’d really like to make a “:-) you’re on Camera!” cycling jersey (with one of those big yellow smiley faces from the days of my youth).

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        Chad August 25, 2015 at 5:59 pm

        I *think* the Oregon standard is that the other party needs to be aware the recording is taking place. Consent isn’t needed, but you can’t record in secret. Pointing a camera at the other party in close quarters should be sufficient to meet the standard.

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          Randall S. August 26, 2015 at 9:40 am

          Oregon is a one-party consent state (as are most states), however Washington is not. I.e. I can record a conversation in which I’m involved, without your consent (or notice).

          http://www.oregonlaws.org/ors/165.540

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            Nick August 26, 2015 at 10:24 am

            Read section 1C again.

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        El Biciclero August 25, 2015 at 7:09 pm

        I would bet that in this case, no audio was necessary to prove an offence was committed, so even if the audio portion of the video was inadmissible, the video would be enough. I don’t know whether there is a legal concept of admitting muted video as evidence…?

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          Todd Hudson August 26, 2015 at 8:50 am

          These are the many questions I have when it comes to ride cameras. I’d really like to hear Ray Thomas opine about all the legal nuance and ramifications.

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            KristenT August 26, 2015 at 11:35 am

            My feeling is that, since both parties are in a public space where there would be no expectation of privacy, video recordings (and probably also audio recordings) would be hunky dory. That’s how stores and DOTs get away with their security and traffic cams.

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    mw August 25, 2015 at 3:06 pm

    So, he didn’t actually get to issue the citizens citation. He was just just lucky enough to find the ear of a friendly cop.

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      Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) August 26, 2015 at 9:33 am

      yes. That’s an important point to keep in mind. In this case he just got the video in front of the right officer. This was not an example of the Citizens Citation process.

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    Scott H August 25, 2015 at 3:10 pm

    “But he pulled out in front of me before I passed him.” Nope. Sorry, but the thing about video footage is that it proves you’re a horrible lying liar.

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      9watts August 25, 2015 at 3:26 pm

      In a just world wouldn’t there be additional consequences for lying to a police officer when you’ve already been fingered for endangering other people’s lives?

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        Scott H August 25, 2015 at 3:44 pm

        I think it’s somewhere in chapter 162, giving false information perhaps? http://www.oregonlaws.org/ors/162.375

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          9watts August 25, 2015 at 3:50 pm

          Thanks for that citation. I wish our justice system took these clauses to heart. I remember an incident on Barbur a few years ago when a woman in an SUV ran into someone on a bike. Her statements to the police at the scene and if I remember correctly especially afterwards veered off into lala land, were baldfaced lies. Only later did our friend on a bike remember that his camera had been running the whole time. When he gave the video to the cops things turned out much better for him, but I do not recall there being any consequences whatsoever for lying.
          Kind of like the exonerations of people on death row that keep happening, after ten or twenty or even thirty years behind bars. To my knowledge, the cops, lawyers, judges who either deliberately or sloppily caused this person to rot in jail for a crime he didn’t commit never receive any punishment or even a reprimand.

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      encephalopath August 25, 2015 at 5:10 pm

      I’m not sure the driver is necessarily lying. People in cars are really bad at seeing things that aren’t a direct threat to them. “He came out of nowhere.”

      Inattention blindness and confirmation bias make drivers just not see all kinds of things.

      He pulled out in front of me might mean, I didn’t see him at all and then suddenly I noticed him.

      So lying or I had no idea what was happening on the road in front of me. Sort of the same thing.

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        Chris I August 25, 2015 at 9:09 pm

        No, he’s definitely lying. What you see in the video is a calculated maneuver to get around someone. It was stupid, reckless, and completely intentional.

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    Dan August 25, 2015 at 3:33 pm

    Todd Hudson
    What are the legal ramifications of audio/video recordings in public, where conversations like the one between Tapay and that unkind motorist? Oregon requires mutual consent for recording audio conversations, but I don’t know the nuances and exceptions to this law, how it could apply to bike cameras, and what it could mean when they are used as evidence.Recommended 0

    I would imagine it would come down to the recorded party’s “expectation of privacy” which I should think would be nonexistent on a public street.

    I’m not a lawyer though.

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    Jayson August 25, 2015 at 3:48 pm

    I’d like to think this is a good outcome, but part of me doubts those citations will turn into much. At the very least, I hope his insurance rates go up because he’s clearly a big risk to public safety.

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    Dave August 25, 2015 at 3:55 pm

    Does anybody realize in how few US cities there’s a liklihood of the police doing anything but laughing this off? I’m not always pro-cop, but appreciate what we’ve got, here.

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      ethan August 25, 2015 at 4:05 pm

      This seems like a rarity, and they only did something once they had video evidence. In my case, the police didn’t even do anything, even though the driver deliberately hit me with their car and there were witnesses.

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      Dan M. August 27, 2015 at 6:00 pm

      Raise your damn standards, then. Portland cops are awful too.

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    Rob Chapman August 25, 2015 at 4:17 pm

    It’s funny, I just ordered front and rear cameras before reading this article. While my credit card didn’t need the damage, the cameras are a welcome new layer to my defense plan. It’s comforting to have a spectrum of tools from passive through lethal available to help stay in one piece.

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    endo August 25, 2015 at 4:27 pm

    Unfortunately this reckless behavior is going to continue until there are real serious penalties for it. I’d like to see something like this result in jail time and ramp up the penalties for more serious infractions. Why should someone operating a death machine be free of real consequences?

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    Paul August 25, 2015 at 5:06 pm

    Hallelujah, justice has been served! Kudos to Mr. Tapay for his persistence. I have to wonder with that driver’s attitude if he would have stopped if he had hit one of the bicyclists.

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    B. Carfree August 25, 2015 at 6:03 pm

    “While I hope no one is ever killed again, I think if people had that opportunity to stand there and see that person dead, in the road, they’d understand how real this is. It’s not a game. Driving is not a game.”

    This should be required reading for every license renewal.

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    Dwaine Dibbly August 25, 2015 at 6:07 pm

    I use cameras so that my estate can sue the pants off of the driver who kills me.

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    Britt G August 25, 2015 at 6:29 pm

    Alright, this story gave me a question. If I were to laminate a brightly colored sign that alerted motorists that I was actively recording my ride and I displayed it visibly where they can see it, would I be less likely to get harassed/yelled at/nearly squished by a driver angrily speeding past me on a greenway?

    What’s the most succinct/catchy way to say, “If your carelessness causes my death or dismemberment, it’s on video and you’ll get in trouble, so don’t even try to kill me — THANKS”?

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      jeff August 25, 2015 at 7:51 pm

      simple. a shirt which states on the back ” you are being recorded. I am litigious”

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        lyle w. August 25, 2015 at 10:36 pm

        Or just get a Ducks or US Marine Corps cycling jersey on ebay.

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          Robert Burchett August 26, 2015 at 8:23 am

          Gadsden flag

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      9watts August 25, 2015 at 9:39 pm

      Or smile, you’re on camera
      = fewer characters

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        Robert Burchett August 26, 2015 at 8:16 am

        CC TV camera logo, black on yellow, 6 inches in diameter. They’ll catch on soon enough.

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          Robert Burchett August 26, 2015 at 8:19 am

          And uh, ride legal, dewd

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      Seth Alford August 26, 2015 at 5:50 pm

      “YOU ARE
      ON
      VIDEO”

      Or, maybe this, which uses fewer characters and so can be made larger and more easily read:

      “U R ON
      VIDEO”

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    Pete August 25, 2015 at 6:44 pm

    Tony: thank you for pursuing this. When California was debating the pros and cons of its second attempt at the 3′ passing law, this is exactly the scenario that I described would benefit from the legal coverage. As we all know, this happens often, but your persistence will at least result in a bit more awareness of the situation.

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    Jerry August 25, 2015 at 7:43 pm

    kgw had a follow-up of this story. On their facebook page they asked for opinions of who do you support, driver or the rider? Quite a eyeopener of all the hostility towards cyclists. Pretty scary people out there!

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      Dan August 26, 2015 at 7:23 am

      I wonder if the kind of drivers who comment online on a bike story are an accurate cross-section of people, or just a handful of nutjobs.

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        lyle w. August 26, 2015 at 7:58 am

        For opinions about cyclists it’s probably a more accurate cross-section than bikeportland. But no, I think it’s more reactionary and has more sociopathic haters than a true sampling.

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    John August 25, 2015 at 10:22 pm

    The guy Andrew Reid wanted for mayor back in 2004 is “bad boy” Phil Busse, former managing editor of the Portland Mercury. BOAFFT

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    lyle w. August 25, 2015 at 10:25 pm

    I feel a lot of frustration that this guy is– generally speaking– getting a slap on the wrist.

    Let’s look at the bright side, though– he clearly has contempt for cyclists and will put our physical health in danger just to be a spiteful and vindictive human being. Now, from this point forward, he has to think about the fact that this type of case can be pursued against him (and outside of the bounds of a police officer witnessing it directly) when he’s contemplating harassing or threatening someone else on a bike, and he also now knows he has a public record of behaving this way, and knows a lot of people (including people who would be in charge of prosecuting him) know the type of personal character he possesses.

    Good luck with that, a-hole.

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    Pat Franz August 25, 2015 at 10:30 pm

    Anyone taken the time to calculate how fast the driver was going? Even with the fisheye, it’s clear the speed was far in excess of the speed limit. Or does that not matter if you’re getting socked with a Careless Driving charge?

    My guess is he was doing north of 40. I wonder what it will take to make it not “worth it” for him?

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      Eric Leifsdad August 25, 2015 at 11:45 pm

      It’s difficult to calculate without frame-by-frame playback, but even then you can only figure an average and the errors in distance will be exaggerated over a shorter time. It looks like he may have been going faster during the pass than after. So far in the distance, the fisheye makes it tough to mark a reference point. Judging by the speed humps and where the car is in shade, it seems to average 30mph, but 35+ just after the pass (150ft/3s — or 2.5s, could be 40). Even 30 is still plenty fast to be dangerous in such close quarters and you can see the northbound woman on a bike veering into the blue van to avoid him.

      Note that 30mph is roughly where wind+tire noise starts to be “loud” — unable to hold a conversation without shouting. Also note the typical dutch neighborhood speed 30km/hr = 18.6mph is very near the average speed of the bike (~17mph) in this clip.

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    Josh Chernoff August 25, 2015 at 10:43 pm

    I have many videos of drivers putting me in harms way but there is something really wrong about having to file a citizens citation for the police to be able to cite a driver. Is this justice only for the wealthily?

    Wheres justice for the people who don’t have the time or money to take someone to court?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fG70ZQp92eg
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WyZo7FUgCSE
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5lNr-iXNGDY
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CAfA_gktiU8

    I would go broke if I had to pay for every time I needed the police to uphold the law.

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      J4son August 26, 2015 at 6:00 am

      Josh, this is America. Wealthy people are the only ones who deserve justice (or any other liberty).

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      meh August 26, 2015 at 7:48 am

      Its the sixth amendment to the constitution, you have the right to face your accuser. Without video, the police officer didn’t witness the offense and cannot appear in court to swear to anything.

      I would prefer not to throw out the constitution.

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        Randall S. August 26, 2015 at 9:41 am

        The police officer is not the accuser; the person almost killed by the motorist is.

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          meh August 26, 2015 at 9:48 am

          Which is why you can do a citizens cite when you don’t have video evidence.

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        Gary August 26, 2015 at 11:27 am

        I agree with your larger sentiment, however a traffic violation is not a criminal charge and the right to confront accuser probably would not apply.

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          meh August 26, 2015 at 11:47 am

          Unless witnessed a police officer cannot appear in court and testify about the offense. Be it a criminal offense or not. Again the whole reason behind the citizens cite, allowing those who witness an offense to appear in court and testify against the accused.

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            9watts August 26, 2015 at 11:54 am

            I say again: the officer who gave me a $260 ticket for unsafe passing on the right did not see me do anything but relied on statements from the person in a car he did see run a red light. I’m having trouble hearing what you are saying as anything but a selective reading of the statute.

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        invisiblebikes August 26, 2015 at 3:25 pm

        that’s not how the 6th amendment works, it’s not applicable unless your freedoms are at stake which typically is only under criminal code. Traffic laws apply differently

        in layman’s terms (not to be confused with with legal jargon) traffic laws are separate from federal law. you waive the majority of those rights when your behind the wheel and went to the DMV and agreed to the terms of your drivers license.

        I am simplifying it here so if you want to debate it, look it up or talk to a traffic court judge they will learn ya right quick.

        But you have touched on a good point of the gray area that effects us as cyclists or pedestrians. As we have not waived those rights voluntarily but are being forced to waive our constitutional rights once we enter the public domain of cardom.

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        El Biciclero August 26, 2015 at 5:04 pm

        As I understand it, this is the major argument against automated enforcement of speed limits and red light compliance. Only the camera witnesses the infraction, so there is no “accuser” to face in court. I believe this principle is also the root of the requirement that “speed vans” have an officer sitting in them who can serve as the “accuser” for all the photo speed citations. Given the recent legislative session’s discussion of automated enforcement, I don’t know what the current state of legal requirements is for photo enforcement, but I would think that if photo radar (speed) and photo red light enforcement are legal, then helmet-cam-video “enforcement” ought to become legal as well. Now then, how to create a video clearinghouse for recorded offenses and verify the authenticity of submissions thereto…

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    • Tony T
      Tony T August 26, 2015 at 9:00 am

      I didn’t have to file anything. I was prepared to, but PPB stepped up and pursued the citation on their own.

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        Josh Chernoff August 26, 2015 at 9:25 am

        I was miss informed about this issue. Thank you for clarifying.

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          Eric Leifsdad August 26, 2015 at 12:38 pm

          It does sound like it still took a fair amount of effort. Maybe just streamline the video process and we can buy justice in bulk? I could write at least 1000 speeding tickets per day on Terwilliger.

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    Not important August 26, 2015 at 8:31 am

    This is what Portland has become, never mind the fact you are riding down the middle of the road with your child you expect drivers to yield to you? If you heard the car why didn’t you get to the side of the road?
    This s*** has gotten out of hand bicyclists need to pay the same as motorists since they feel they own the f****** roads. License, registration
    Inspection . Tags and insurance. Then and only then will I yield to one of you ***** riding your bike in the middle of the road! What a joke !

    *unacceptable insults and profanity deleted by moderator.

    Hello sir, I know you won’t likely read this, but just in case you do, we don’t tolerate that type of language here. I left your comment up because I value all opinions and I want people to know what the sentiment is out there. — Jonathan

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      Dan August 26, 2015 at 9:36 am

      Hello, welcome.

      Educate yourself.

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      Rob Chapman August 26, 2015 at 10:07 am

      There is so much ignorance in this post that I don’t know where to start. Be careful with that attitude though, it could get you in bad trouble.

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      Lester Burnham August 26, 2015 at 10:53 am

      Pretty negative post too…amazing Maus let this one through. Asleep at the handlebars?

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      Pete August 26, 2015 at 6:58 pm

      Breathe… count to ten… before you give yourself a heart attack.

      You can see by the shadows in the video and relative measurements with the sun at Tony’s back that he is clearly not riding “down the middle of the road.”

      http://bikeportland.org/2015/07/14/attempt-seek-justice-video-evidence-hinges-mystery-woman-149442#comment-6466712

      Better yet, take yourself for a bike ride… it will calm you down. Have a lovely day! 🙂

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    Barbara August 26, 2015 at 8:41 am

    Is this a “bike” or neighborhood street with the bumps designed to get bikes off the major streets ? If so the speed limit would have been 20 mph which he certainly looked to be going faster than.

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    Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) August 26, 2015 at 9:35 am

    Note to Andy K and Eric L (and others),

    I have deleted your comments that referenced the location of Mr. Reid’s place of residence. Please don’t do that anymore. It’s uncalled for and unproductive.

    Thanks for understanding.

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      Andy K August 26, 2015 at 10:09 am

      Thanks for deleting it – I regretted it almost immediately after posting my comment.

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      Eric Leifsdad August 26, 2015 at 12:48 pm

      Sorry, yeah I’m sure he’s not the only driver using 34th or Clinton as a cut-through. This case really does underscore the need for widespread use of diverters.

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    KristenT August 26, 2015 at 11:46 am

    It’s a sad, sad, sad day when we feel like we have to have the cameras rolling when we ride our bikes, just to feel safe. That we feel like we have to have video evidence of the vehicles that menace us, hit us, hurt us, kill us, just to make sure we (or our families) can get justice– or at least, our medical bills paid.

    It definitely doesn’t make me feel like riding my bike is a safe transportation option in the city of Portland. Shame on you, car drivers, truck drivers, and bus drivers, that you make us feel this way.

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      Lester Burnham August 26, 2015 at 1:26 pm

      Definitely not platinum.

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      wsbob August 26, 2015 at 7:05 pm

      “t’s a sad, sad, sad day when we feel like we have to have the cameras rolling when we ride our bikes, just to feel safe. …” Kristen

      I don’t currently use video gear, and I don’t think being equipped with it would lead me to feel safer in using the road with a bike.

      What the gear is proving to be able in some situations to do though, is help in taking recourse against bad road users. It can help in resolving questions that otherwise might be stymied in a ‘party A says-party B says’ situation.

      Got to do something about the deplorable road use behavior that good road users have to deal with. Out of the neighborhoods as well as within them, with residential density increasing, respectful use of roads many people must share, becomes increasingly important.

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    Adam August 26, 2015 at 1:08 pm

    I wouldn’t say it was a complete win. The police refused to ticket for the not one, but TWO stop signs the camera caught the driver rolling through without stopping.

    I’m assuming this sets a precedent for them never issuing a ticket to another cyclist ever at Ladd Circle. I’m being 100% serious.

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      invisiblebikes August 26, 2015 at 3:54 pm

      Its a lot more complex than that, traffic laws are different than criminal law so LEOs are less inclined to “throw the book” at someone and issue multiple citations for moving violations. And many traffic courts will throw out overlapping citations.
      There are a lot of reasons why LEOs don’t issue multiple citations anymore but one of the more common is paperwork for both LEO and traffic court, also its much higher chance the driver will just pay the fine or go to traffic school when its a single citation and multiple moving violations can and will impact a driver over a life time personally and financially and is frowned upon by our legal system.

      This is what is so wrong with our traffic laws, we err on the side of leniency to a fault and it has become a deadly social norm. Our society or piers confuse mistakes or the “A” word with negligence and incompetence. I now lose respect for anyone that uses the “A” word when discussing traffic violence.

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    Josh Chernoff August 26, 2015 at 1:26 pm

    KristenT
    It’s a sad, sad, sad day when we feel like we have to have the cameras rolling when we ride our bikes, just to feel safe. That we feel like we have to have video evidence of the vehicles that menace us, hit us, hurt us, kill us, just to make sure we (or our families) can get justice– or at least, our medical bills paid.It definitely doesn’t make me feel like riding my bike is a safe transportation option in the city of Portland. Shame on you, car drivers, truck drivers, and bus drivers, that you make us feel this way.Recommended 3

    Don’t shame the drivers, after all our government officials are complacent with their behaviors. Cant expect there to be empathy from the drivers after all they are entitled to drive the same roads. Rather ask where is the accountability and who is upholding it.

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      Dan M. August 27, 2015 at 6:02 pm

      You blame the government for this guy’s behavior? Please.

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    PorterStout August 27, 2015 at 1:27 pm

    I wonder if by now he’s: a) been on this website and watched himself from the perspective of a cyclist and b) altered his opinion any about his actions being worth it, especially after receiving the tickets? His response in the heat of the moment was simple false bravado, but I wonder what he actually thinks now.

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