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Arrest made in fatal crash on SE Center near Powell Butte – UPDATED

Posted by on March 19th, 2016 at 5:32 pm


Approximate crash location. Powell Butte Nature Park
is in the lower right.

A person was killed today after being involved in a traffic collision.

Details are still coming in, but so far we know that the deceased was a 17-year-old man and the other party in the collision was a person driving a Dodge Dakota pickup. The incident happened just before 4:00 pm today on SE Center a few blocks east of 141st Avenue (map).

Center is a low-volume neighborhood street with speed bumps and it’s a popular east-west bicycle route in the area.

According to the city’s Vision Zero crash map, there were zero reported bike collisions on this stretch of Center during the 2004-2013 period.


According to the Portland Police, the driver of the motor vehicle has been detained and their Major Crash Team is still on the scene conducting an investigation.

This is the first bicycle fatality of 2016. There were two fatal bicycle crashes all of last year.

We’ll update this story as we know more.

UPDATE, 8:30 am on March 20th: Police have finished their initial investigation and they’ve arrested 55-year-old Franklin Drobny for Reckless Driving, DUII and Manslaughter II. He has been lodged at the Multnomah County Jail.

UPDATE: There was another fatal crash involving a vulnerable roadway user last night. A 58-year-old man was struck and killed by a motor vehicle operator while trying to cross NE Cully at Mason. The police have arrested the driver for Reckless Driving, DUII and Manslaughter II. More from Police here.

— Jonathan Maus, (503) 706-8804 –

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NOTE: We love your comments and work hard to ensure they are productive, considerate, and welcoming of all perspectives. Disagreements are encouraged, but only if done with tact and respect. If you see a mean or inappropriate comment, please contact us and we'll take a look at it right away. Also, if you comment frequently, please consider holding your thoughts so that others can step forward. Thank you — Jonathan

  • Jeff March 19, 2016 at 5:38 pm

    Rest in peace. #visionzero

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  • Terry D-M March 19, 2016 at 6:22 pm

    Speed Bumps do nothing for the Pick-ups…..aggressive drivers just hop them.

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    • lyle w. March 20, 2016 at 11:46 am

      Yep, I frequently see people take the speedbumps on SE Lincoln so fast (while they’re diverting) that the tail end of the vehicle basically gets banged on the pavement as it comes off them.

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      • Spiffy March 20, 2016 at 2:31 pm

        that can happen even if you’re going the speed limit, especially if you have worn out rear shocks…

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  • Allan L. March 19, 2016 at 6:44 pm

    “A person was killed today after being involved in a traffic collision.”

    Is it just me, or does that seem a little harsh?

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    • Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) March 19, 2016 at 7:08 pm

      Yes. I hear you. I changed it to “person died”.

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      • Josh Chernoff March 20, 2016 at 6:33 am

        Looks like a dui, I’d call it murder.

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        • lyle w. March 20, 2016 at 11:48 am

          Apparently two previous DUIs for this lowlife, too.
          When you have previous DUIs, and you know intimately the risk your putting yourself and everyone else in by driving drunk, that is as close as you can get to intentionally deciding to kill someone as you can get.

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          • B. Carfree March 20, 2016 at 7:22 pm

            If you can find two previous DUII’s in Oregon, that means he has three priors since the first one is generally “diverted” and doesn’t show up.

            In SoCal, several DA’s are forcing drunk drivers to sign statements that provide for successful prosecutions for second degree murder if they should ever kill someone while driving drunk. At least two DA’s have secured those murder convictions as a result of this strategy. We need to adopt this here.

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        • Tyler March 20, 2016 at 2:24 pm


          Murder is intentional. Maybe it was, maybe it wasn’t. I’m betting it was NOT intentional. Stupid? Yes. Negligent? Yes. But probably not intentional.

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      • Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) March 20, 2016 at 9:57 am

        And now, since the person was arrested for reckless and was drunk, I’ve changed it back to killed.

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    • soren March 19, 2016 at 7:39 pm

      Is it just me, or does that seem a little harsh?

      A human being was killed. Euphemisms are not needed, regardless of the circumstance.

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    • Adron @ Transit Sleuth March 21, 2016 at 8:51 am

      Doesn’t sound overly harsh to me, they were indeed killed by the driver. They’re dead. one can’t be more harsh than the actions that driver committed against the victim.

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  • mh March 19, 2016 at 7:50 pm

    In broad daylight.

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  • buildwithjoe March 19, 2016 at 8:14 pm

    The human on a bike was killed. Over 400 people were killed in 2015 due to cars in Oregon. That’s a record number of people killed.

    Today I was walking my kid to the park where cars speed at 40 in a 30 zone. I got a speed gun and call 823SAFE all the time. The street should be 25. Cops never ticket cars, but suddenly an unmarked cop off duty pulled over a cyclist. The irony of that cop’s action did not register when I noted the irony. It has been 3 years of me and my kid being nearly run down by cars who do not see us in a marked crosswalk. Bryant and Greeley. Some people don’t get it. #visionzero

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    • Tyler March 20, 2016 at 2:29 pm


      Why have you nearly been run down in a crosswalk? Do you step out in front of moving traffic? If so, I recommend you stop doing that. Wait until the traffic stops before stepping in the street. Yes, legally, the car is required to stop when you are in a crosswalk whether it is marked or not, but to be safe, wait until it is obvious they are stopping before getting in front of them. I cross a lot of streets at intersections where there is no marked crosswalk – very few people stop for you and if someone does stop for you they will likely be rear-ended because people don’t expect them to stop for no apparent reason while driving down the street.

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      • Spiffy March 20, 2016 at 4:34 pm

        don’t blame buildwithjoe for legally trying to cross the street in the face of drivers illegally taunting him with death…

        should we all cower on the sidewalk until the air raid sirens stop and we know it’s safe to cross the street? is that what you want? I stand with buildwithjoe and also refuse to be intimidated by bullies… I’ll be the one thinking “tsk tsk” as I walk past you into the street demanding that laws be upheld and continuing across after the cars have stopped for me even if I was illegally buzzed within an inch by twelve cars prior…

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        • are March 20, 2016 at 9:23 pm

          and this is a constructive comment how?

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      • Chris I March 20, 2016 at 7:26 pm

        They are not likely to be rear ended. Stop making things up.

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        • are March 23, 2016 at 1:11 pm

          i would suggest to you motorists that there is a handy device right there on the dash to indicate to following traffic that you are unexpectedly stopping in the travel lane. big red triangle. it is called “hazard lights” for a reason. but i will acknowledge hardly anyone uses this, and often when i mention it on these boards, someone will say “oh is that what that thing is for,” “never thought of that,” etc. learn to use your tools properly.

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      • Tim March 21, 2016 at 10:40 am

        Instead of criticizing people for walking and crossing the street, start walking and crossing the street yourself and see how many time drivers nearly run you down and would rather take a human life than apply the breaks.

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      • Steve Scarich March 23, 2016 at 7:30 am

        I walk a lot in Bend, probably average 3 or 4 miles a day. What I have learned about being a pedestrian at a marked or unmarked crossing: Unmarked: cars will stop maybe 5% of the time; some will literally ignore me if I start to step out, flip me off, etc. Marked: cars will generally stop maybe 20% of the time if I just passively stand there looking straight ahead. If I make eye contact, and lean forward as if I am going to stop, probably 70% will stop. I never actually step out unless the car stops or I know I can easily move fast enough to avoid a car. Walking in public is essentially a crapshoot. The police here never enforce pedestrian laws, unless they have special grant funding from the Feds for a one-day effort, in which case they bust many, many drivers.

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    • paikiala March 21, 2016 at 10:55 am

      what street, what segment?

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      • paikiala March 21, 2016 at 10:56 am

        and, how long ago was your last request?

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  • Mark Smith March 19, 2016 at 8:21 pm

    We taking a wager on whether the person will get a ticket, much less charges?

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    • Tyler March 20, 2016 at 2:31 pm

      Per the update above, he’s already been arrested and charged as he deserves to be.

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      • Spiffy March 20, 2016 at 4:36 pm

        charged? yes…

        as he deserves to be? highly unlikely…

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  • Kristi Finney March 19, 2016 at 10:55 pm

    A person WAS killed today. Just like it’s “crash not accident”, I think “killed”, not “died”, is appropriate. The young man wasn’t just riding along and keeled over due to natural causes. Sadly, it appears that someone driving a vehicle killed him. It IS harsh. I feel so badly for him and for his family.

    There was quite a heated discussion about this very thing on the closed MADD Victim Services Facebook page just the other day. The vast majority of victims and families said they say “killed” (some even use “murdered”) and were not all right with “died” and especially not “passed away.” Dustin was killed. That’s how I see it.

    I sure wish I didn’t have to keep seeing it.

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    • rick March 19, 2016 at 11:14 pm

      very sad news

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    • Opus the Poet March 20, 2016 at 9:28 am

      I think the statement was about the poor construction of the sentence that made it sound like the person was executed because of the wreck, not the person killed. Although I would like to see a few people executed for their driving when it kills people.

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  • J_R March 20, 2016 at 5:24 am

    From PPB website:


    The initial investigation into this incident has been complete. Franklin Drobny, a 55-year-old male, has been arrested for Reckless Driving, DUII and Manslaughter II. He has been lodged at the Multnomah County Jail.

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    • 9watts March 20, 2016 at 7:28 am

      Someone tell DA Olenick. Seems like he could learn a lesson from how this case was handled.

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      • bjorn March 20, 2016 at 11:12 am

        Actually this is just how it works, if you are drunk and you stay at the scene after you kill someone you are going to jail, if you flee and leave them to die alone in the street and then turn yourself in after you sober up, well how can we know what happened so how can we charge anyone??? What really needs to change is that if you flee the scene of a fatal accident the penalty is at least equal to what happens when you don’t flee and you are intoxicated.

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        • 9watts March 20, 2016 at 11:40 am

          …except that somehow Olenick learned that the guy behind the wheel had been drinking–I guess because he told him? You’d think that would amount to something actionable.

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          • Dan A March 20, 2016 at 11:48 am

            Even if he hadn’t been drinking, even if he hadn’t been messing around with his phone…..he still failed to see Sundstrom on the road or shoulder ahead of him, failed to see him at the moment of the crash, failed to find him afterwards, and drove home.

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            • Tyler March 20, 2016 at 2:42 pm

              I thought the story said he thought he might have hit something and looked for it but could not find it. It’s interesting that no details came out as to what damage was done to the car, etc, or that the pedestrian was intoxicated (per wsbob comment in previous story); also no mention of traffic at the time of the accident, where the body was found (how far from the road, etc). Very little detail published in that case that I have seen, but I have not seen any police reports on it.

              The fact that he failed to see Sundstrom can perhaps be explained by traffic that blocked the drivers view of Sundstrom until the last second (perhaps that was the second when he was looking at the phone). From the photo in the Sundstrom story, the accident occurred at or near an intersection. It is easy to imagine any of various scenarios that would have prevented the driver from seeing the pedestrian until it was too late – depending on traffic at the time. That’s just speculation, but I don’t remember reading ANYTHING about the traffic at the time of the accident which is kind of weird.

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        • wsbob March 20, 2016 at 11:47 am

          “…What really needs to change is that if you flee the scene of a fatal accident the penalty is at least equal to what happens when you don’t flee and you are intoxicated.” bjorn

          So far, the collision situation that occurred down near Corvallis is very different in terms of being able to readily determine such things as DUI, Careless, and Reckless driving, and Failure to Perform the Duties of a Driver. The driver in that collision basically claims he did his due diligence, turned around and looked for something he hit…didn’t find anything…left feeling he hadn’t left a collision in which a person became a fatality.

          Sadly nevertheless, in these two most recent collisions, the evidence for suspecting a crime has been committed, is much stronger: the people driving have been apprehended, the police apparently believe they can prove they were DUI.

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          • Spiffy March 20, 2016 at 12:45 pm

            they did all those things and yet failed to notice that they hit a person… that just proves that they’re too irresponsible to be driving…

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          • bjorn March 20, 2016 at 1:20 pm

            and Amy Stack said she thought she hit a deer even though there was long blond human hair stuck to her car after the collision. Of course the drunk driver comes up with a story that involves searching around after they sober up and talk to an attorney before turning themselves in.

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  • dwk March 20, 2016 at 7:37 am

    Just a typical weekend in bike/pedestrian Portland Oregon.

    William Hurst, 29, was arrested late Saturday evening after officers responded to reports of a deadly crash at Northeast Cully and Mason

    Police said the victim, a 58-year-old man, was crossing NE Cully from the south side of Mason when Hurst hit him. The man’s name has not been released.

    Hours earlier, the Portland Police Bureau’s Major Crash Team was called out to the 14200 block of Southeast Center Street on reports of a teenage bicyclist in a collision with a Dodge Dakota. The 17-year-old was killed. His name has not yet been released.

    Franklin Drobny, 55, was arrested and lodged into the Multnomah County Detention Center.

    In Vancouver, a 20-year-old pedestrian was seriously injured in an early Sunday morning collision with a hit-and-run driver.

    The crash happened around 1 a.m. near the 4000 block of 131st Street. Police have very few leads. The vehicle is dark and will likely have front end damage on the passenger side.

    On Friday, officers responded to a crash on Northeast Glisan Street at Northeast 117th. In that crash, police said an 89-year-old man hit a 35-year-old woman while she was crossing the road. Police have not determined if the crash was caused by impaired driving. The victim, Amber Lapine, suffered life-threatening injuries. The driver has not been arrested.

    In a prepared statement, the police bureau said, “The PPB expresses its sincerest sympathy’s to all those impacted by these preventable tragedies. We would like to remind the public of the dangers of driving while under the influence of intoxicants and also ask all drivers to be aware of vulnerable road users such as bicyclists and pedestrians.”

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    • middle of the road guy March 21, 2016 at 10:38 am

      If it was typical it would be happening every weekend. Two deaths over the last year is 1 per 26 weeks…4%.

      Not a “typical” event.

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    • paikiala March 21, 2016 at 10:58 am

      You provide no context for ‘typical’. You list an out of state crash as part of Portland.
      Excuse me if I doubt your statements.

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      • dwk March 21, 2016 at 11:06 am

        Excuse me for posting……

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  • Terry D-M March 20, 2016 at 8:15 am

    A second person killed by a drunk driver, this time a pedestrian crossing NE Cully and Mason. Driver has been charged.

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  • SE March 20, 2016 at 8:57 am

    I drive that street quite often. Even calling it “low traffic” is an understatement.
    Lots of unobstructed visibility. Driver had to be impaired.

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    • paikiala March 21, 2016 at 11:02 am

      2013 counts near 136th and 146th measured 1300 and 1100 trips per day with 85th percentiles of 25-27 mph.
      What is low volume to you?
      Remember, cities usually grow, so low volume 20 years ago will not be low volume 20 years from now.

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  • Random March 20, 2016 at 9:22 am

    Franklin Dubrony, the guy arrested, has at least two prior arrests in 2013 for DUI, and probably one in 2014, according to Google.

    More of Multnomah County’s “catch and release” law enforcement.

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    • still riding after all that March 20, 2016 at 11:42 am

      The “arrested” link goes here:

      Franklin Eugene Drobny is the driver’s name, according to the report.

      Here is what I would identify as Problem Number One:
      “DUII (A Misdemeanor)”

      Have we not yet learned that drunk driving (or stoned driving) should be a felony? Jail and then prison, no more driver’s license, take away any and all vehicles owned by the offender.

      If there were 2 separate sets of roads – one for drunk drivers, one for the rest of us – I wouldn’t mind if they got drunk, got behind the wheel, and killed each other. Good riddance! But that’s not how it works. Since we have just one set of roads, those of us who DON’T drive drunk/stoned deserve to have a reasonable degree of safety as we travel from one place to another.

      A drunk-driving “accident” is NEVER an accident, it’s a crime.

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      • Spiffy March 20, 2016 at 12:47 pm

        we have not learned very much about stoned driving yet…

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        • still riding after all that March 20, 2016 at 1:18 pm

          We had one good lesson. You must have seen the story about Martin Greenough being killed by a stoned driver on Lombard. It was only 3 months ago.

          Stoned, smashed into a bicycle rider from behind, killed him, left the scene. Honestly now, do you want the driver of a motor vehicle that is overtaking you on the road to be high on pot, or sober and paying attention?

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          • Dan A March 20, 2016 at 1:39 pm

            As much as we’d like to believe that Kenneth Smith Jr would have been a good driver without pot in his system, I don’t think so. He ran Greenough down from behind and then fled the scene. It’s more likely that Smith was a terrible driver to begin with.

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          • Spiffy March 20, 2016 at 2:18 pm

            yes, I remember, and knew that somebody would reference it…

            do you want the driver of a motor vehicle that is overtaking you on the road to be high on pot, or sober and not paying attention?

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        • Tim March 21, 2016 at 10:46 am

          But we do know that lighting the pipe while driving is distracted driving. Three teens in daddy’s SUV drifted into the bike lane, when I looked over to see why they were having trouble staying in their lane the driver was too busy lighting up on his way to school in the morning. I should have called it in.

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          • Spiffy March 21, 2016 at 2:56 pm

            that’s just bad form…

            if the cop could get to the school before the kid then it’d have a good impact…

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      • El Biciclero March 20, 2016 at 2:19 pm

        “If there were 2 separate sets of roads…”

        An oldie but a goodie from The Onion.

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    • Spiffy March 22, 2016 at 5:34 pm

      I found:

      09/20/2013 = DUII, reckless driving, failure to perform the duties of a driver…

      02/01/2014 = DUII

      so the first DUII that I can find it looks like he hit something and didn’t stop, yet was released the same day he was arrested…

      the second time he got lucky and didn’t hit anything…

      the third time he killed the person he hit…

      how many dozens (hundreds?) of times has he driven drunk and been lucky enough to get away with it?

      why didn’t we learn the first time we caught him not to let him back on the road?

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      • Dan A March 22, 2016 at 8:05 pm

        God-given right to drive…

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  • soren March 20, 2016 at 12:12 pm

    BikeLoudPDX is holding a Re-imagine Powell Ride and a Direct Action Meeting at 4:15 at Hopworks Urban Brewery today. We are going to be <b<LOUD about these unnecessary deaths.

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  • Champs March 20, 2016 at 1:10 pm

    As much as anybody wishes to argue, no amount of built infrastructure or wordsmithery could have prevented what is first and foremost a human tragedy.

    DUI is correlated with over 30% of all MVI fatalities. Things have to change.

    Between now and “Zero by 2035” is the time between the passage of DOMA and marriage equality as a matter of *law*, never mind personal acceptance.

    As an army, law enforcement has never won The War on anything.

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    • JeffS March 20, 2016 at 1:41 pm

      Correlated is the wrong word here.

      Besides, why is it worse to kill someone while drunk than to kill someone while sober? Why do we have to have an excuse to charge someone for their negligence?

      Why is texting worse than adjusting the radio? Or plain old not paying attention?

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      • Spiffy March 20, 2016 at 2:23 pm

        “Besides, why is it worse to kill someone while drunk than to kill someone while sober? Why do we have to have an excuse to charge someone for their negligence?”

        if my loved one is killed I don’t care if it’s intentional or negligent because they’re still killed… I want the punishment to fit the DEATH, not merely the traffic violation… yes or no: are they dead? if yes, then you get the punishment for killing somebody…

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        • Tom Hardy March 20, 2016 at 4:28 pm

          And killing with any weapon, including an automobile should require a death sentence. Only exception would be if the individual that was killed was committing suicide by auto.

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          • Tyler March 20, 2016 at 9:02 pm

            Based on lack of details about this case, that might be a possibility and why no charges were filed.

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          • paikiala March 21, 2016 at 11:04 am

            the trouble with a hypothesis (and absolutes)…
            what about self defense?

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      • Tyler March 20, 2016 at 2:47 pm

        Texting takes your eye off the road far longer than adjusting the radio. That’s why.

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        • Tyler March 20, 2016 at 2:49 pm

          And it would be cruel and unusual punishment to force you to not change the station when a commercial comes on. 🙂

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      • wsbob March 20, 2016 at 8:09 pm

        “…Why is texting worse than adjusting the radio? Or plain old not paying attention?” jeff s

        That’s an interesting question…to which it’s worthwhile to consider answers to, I think. Personally, I have no first hand experience texting, because I dont’ text…don’t even have a cell phone. Sitting in a chair in the coffee shop, typing out short messages using a tablet, requires more concentration than I generally want to expend on that sort of thing. Not going to happen while I’m driving.

        Have seen other people do it though, with the thumb, etc, and I have to say, it looks far more complicated an action to perform than…with eyes still on the road ahead, reaching down with one hand and twisting a dial, or punching a button on the radio’s tuner. Or, reaching over to grab a cup of coffee, soda, and so forth.

        Or (and I’d have to rely on others’ opinion on this.) reaching a hand over to a cell phone lying on the passenger’s seat, to tap and see whether calls have come in. If this is something that involves maybe only a second or two, no more, of eyes away from the road, that’s a period of time most people may consider to be normal while operating a vehicle on the road.

        For months, running on television broadcast, there have been some very vivid public service announcements advising against texting while driving, Shot inside the car, they show the person driving, and busy texting as well, looking back and forth between phone and road. How many seconds between each redirection of attention? Don’t know. Person driving looks down, people begin crossing the street..person driving doesn’t see them…boom.

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  • SE March 20, 2016 at 3:39 pm

    Actually this is just how it works, if you are drunk and you stay at the scene after you kill someone you are going to jail, if you flee and leave them to die alone in the street and then turn yourself in after you sober up, well how can we know what happened so how can we charge anyone??? What really needs to change is that if you flee the scene of a fatal accident the penalty is at least equal to what happens when you don’t flee and you are intoxicated.
    Recommended 10

    YES , a strategy developed 3 years ago by our very own ski bowl owner, Kirk Hanna

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  • catherine feta cheese March 20, 2016 at 9:33 pm

    Another awful event, this time on the Springwater, Gresham. One wishes the alert had been put out on Friday, not Sunday, with a suspect at large.

    “Woman reports sexual assault along Springwater Corridor in Gresham”

    Dana Tims | The Oregonian/OregonLive

    on March 20, 2016 at 8:52 PM, updated March 20, 2016 at 8:54 PM
    Police are searching for a man wanted in connection with a sexual assault reported by a 22-year-old Portland woman Friday afternoon on the Springwater Corridor near Southwest Highland Drive in Gresham.

    The investigation in continuing and the unidentified suspect remains at large, police said.

    The woman told police she was riding her bicycle westbound on the trail at about 4:20 p.m., when a tire went flat. While she was changing the tire, the woman flagged down a man riding a dark-colored mountain bike and asked for help.

    After talking briefly, the man threatened to kill the woman with a knife, she told police. He then forced her into a wooded area south of the trail and sexually assaulted her, the victim said.

    She described the suspect as bald man with a medium build, in his 40s, clean-shaven and about 6-feet to 6-feet-two inches tall. He was wearing a red jacket, blue jeans and carried a dark-colored backpack.

    Anyone with information about the case is asked to call the Gresham Police tip line at 503-618-2719.

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  • Carlsson March 20, 2016 at 10:17 pm
  • Mike Quigley March 21, 2016 at 5:50 am

    Krav Maga is easy to learn self defense against armed attackers. Even multiple attackers. Women and kids can do it. And it’s fun to practice. In today’s “Land of the Free” I’m amazed at how vulnerable most people are.

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  • Jim Chasse March 21, 2016 at 9:14 am

    Such a waste! Any death is a tragedy, but a young person especially so.
    In an area of town where bike infrastructure is slow to come and encouraging cycling is a priority, it only discourages people from riding.
    This is my neighborhood and it hits very close to home.

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  • Oliver March 21, 2016 at 9:49 am

    2 miles from where that driver started shooting at someone who yelled at him for speeding.

    Bicycle infrastructure is not the problem.

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  • Paul Atkinson March 21, 2016 at 9:59 am

    I guess it’s at least a positive that he was drunk.

    Which might seem like a ridiculous thing to say, except I remember the last few cyclists killed or injured by sober drivers and the complete lack of any kind of law under which to prosecute. Or so concluded our crack DA. If there’s no impairment, there’s no crime in running down a cyclist.

    So…I’m happy he was impaired?

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  • Tom March 21, 2016 at 11:25 am

    DUI continues to be the biggest issue for Vision Zero, yet the task force is doing zero to address this problem. Real action would an ordinance to remove driving privileges within city limits for persons with a new DUI conviction until their AA group unanimously votes to approve them to drive. We need visionaries and innovators running Vision Zero, not bureaucrats looking for something to add to their resume.

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  • kittens March 21, 2016 at 2:37 pm

    Great job the PPD found this guy. Hope it leads to some closure for those involved.

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