One month after we posted a call for witnesses of a collision during a pro-Trump rally in downtown Portland on August 29th, someone has stepped forward with a video that shows much more context around the incident.
The most widely-viewed video clip of the incident that we shared initially was taken by Oregon Public Broadcasting reporter Sergio Olmos. Unfortunately it only showed the moments after the driver of a BMW ran over a person’s bicycle at the intersection of SW Washington and 13th.
Now a witness has found cell-phone video posted on YouTube that shows the incident from its outset and the resulting scene on the street. The video was captured by someone named Kenya Robinson who lives on the adjacent block. The collision occurs at around 4 minutes and 17 seconds in Robinson’s video.
In the video you can see someone who appears to intentionally place their bicycle in the crosswalk directly in front of the driver’s BMW SUV. A second or two later the driver accelerates right into the bike and the person. The bicycle owner’s wrist was injured as they moved out of the way, but their bicycle was slammed to the ground and dragged several yards by the driver. The driver then stops and is approached by a Portland Police Officer. The video shows the driver’s face (and license plate number) clearly as onlookers watch the stop take place.
“It’s crazy. Cops ain’t doin’ nothin’. This man literally ran over his bike on purpose and almost ran him over.”
— Kenya Robinson in YouTube video
As police get involved and contact the driver, Robinson (who is Black and I’m assuming is the one taking the video) yells at the police to, “Shoot him in the back! Shoot him 7 times like y’all do us! Put your knee on his neck!” Several people get angry because they think the police don’t do enough to respond to the driver’s dangerous actions. “It’s crazy. Cops ain’t doin’ nothin’. This man literally ran over his bike on purpose and almost ran him over,” Robinson says.
Another woman on the scene (who is also Black) spoke directly to nearby officers and said, “This mother fucker tried to kill somebody and he’s sitting in his car still and y’ all looking at me like I’m the issue?!”
A few minutes later the BMW driver drove off.
The victim’s lawyer is in possession of this video and continues to build their case.
Intentional vehicular violence is nothing new in Portland or America, but it has risen sharply during recent racial justice protests. Two weeks ago a woman was struck and injured by a pick-up truck driver in Hollywood, California during a protest following a ruling in the Breonna Taylor case.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis went so far as to introduce a bill that would absolve drivers of vehicular assault if they could prove they were “fleeing for safety from a mob.”
— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and firstname.lastname@example.org
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I’m struggling to articulate my apoplectic rage that I have for this event. The police don’t have even the slightest intent to punish traffic infractions. Clearly, this poor fellow was walking in the cross walk when (oh look a BMW driver in the wild) he is run over. In direct sight of a marked police vehicle.
I can’t even summon any rage, I’m that upset. The police want to flounce around like they are the victims but they aren’t. They are a collection of poorly disciplined hooligans. They revel in the nightly carnage, spewing their gas and dispensing their violence. All in the name of law and order. But when an innocent citizen is accosted by a bully behind a wheel, there is no law and order, no justice. Not for this poor fellow in the crosswalk.
Watch yourself. Don’t confront. When Trump loses the election who knows how Portland’s cops will react.
Threat or cautionary? I don’t think they can elect him once he dies of Covid.
Alternatively, if he won we know the “peaceful” protests would ramp up.
Oh, “we” “know” that, do “we”?
Let us hope that God Blesses him Anew.
“Campaign finance records show local police have donated more to the Democratic Party than the Republican Party in 2020.”
“Donald Trump has made my job a hell of a lot harder since he started talking about Portland, but I never thought he’d try to turn my wife against me! #PortlandSheriff #Debates2020 #DebateNight”
Oh dear. Up until this video, there was a pretty good circumstantial case of the walking cyclist getting hit while innocently crossing into a left-turning BMW – the crosswalk law that drivers must yield to crossing pedestrians, plus lots of sympathetic witnesses. But alas this video and more importantly the still from it comes out. The still doesn’t seem to show the bicyclist-pedestrian walking his bike parallel to the stripes as if intending to cross the street, but it’s as if he is standing at a clear 30-40 degree angle to it, as if he is intentionally using his bicycle to confront the driver. The driver is 3rd or 4th in a line of cars who have successfully turned left, and the light is still clearly green when he is turning, with other cars behind him, clearly within the bounds and requirements of the law to turn. Now the burden of proof has been increased on the cyclist – was the car driver another Maga supporter/protester with an intent to cause harm? Or was he an innocent nonpolitical driver in the wrong place at the wrong time? And will the car-driving East County jury convict the driver?
I’m getting a reading of over 9000 Scovilles on this take.
I take my news with a few grains of salt these days; the spiciness I treat with fatty foods, like a glass of whole milk or a salad with ranch dressing. Even revolutionaries like chocolate-chip cookies.
They do indeed! I remember that Doonesbury cartoon:-)
1972 or so. Nearly 50 years ago.
The cyclist was standing in the crosswalk. If the light was green for the car, it was also green for the crosswalk. The angle of the bike doesn’t matter. The cyclist was standing in the crosswalk when the car ran over his bike. Looked like the cyclist was crossing in the crosswalk and he came to a stop a slammed his bike down when he realized that the BMW was driving at him and not stopping.
From the video presented, the driver did stop very briefly before he crushed the bike. Did the driver make eye contact to make sure he wasn’t hitting the person? Was his intent to crush the bike rather than the person? Did the driver see the bike in front of his hood? The cyclist later said to the filming bystander that he hurt his wrist but was otherwise physically OK.
What I think or that anyone else thinks happened or didn’t happen doesn’t matter as much as what his lawyers can convince the jury. And my point is that this video is going to make it harder for the cyclist to prove that he was in the process of crossing in the crosswalk, which is technically what a crosswalk is for, whether its marked or not. If however he was not intending to cross, then he’s like any other user who is parked in the middle of the street, be it a car driver, panhandler, food cart, or jogger, and his case with the jury is thus weakened.
On the contrary my fine strudel, at 4:11 -> 4:13 the phone pans left. You can see a blur in the crosswalk, aligned with the stripes. This is the cyclist. While it is a blur and one would protest that you can’t tell who or what it is, you cannot deny that the cyclist “magically” appears shortly after. This must be the cyclist in the blur. He could have come from no where else. If you take that logic, it’s clear that he was using the crosswalk legally, as designated. The motorist was entirely in the wrong.
I think, unfortunately, that you can also see the “don’t walk” signal is visible in these frames and also the later frames just before showing the contact between bike and car. Don’t know what the rules are regarding this. It’s my understanding that as a driver I have a duty to be in control of my vehicle at all times. And even if a pedestrian is in the intersection illegally, I should drive my car in such a way that I am able to stop or avoid the pedestrian. But these things are difficult to parse. I do think the driver, confronted with a person in front of them in a crosswalk, stopped and then chose to drive over the bike and endangered the cyclist’s life.
Definitely was a flashing red hand, not a solid ‘don’t walk’ signal.
I see the same. Unfortunately, the camera is not trained on the entry to the crosswalk throughout the video, so we don’t really know if the walk sign was already flashing before he entered, or started flashing after.
For clarity, flashing walk means continue crossing but don’t start crossing.
Ah, I see that in the last frame the signal dims. At first I thought it was just an artifact of the video since the camera, and maybe the person holding the camera, are moving so much. Anyway, I think the onus is on driver treat the pedestrian as a more vulnerable road user. Weather a court would agree seems risky, especially if you can cast doubt as to whether the ped entered the street legally.
I think in this case, the driver will likely argue they were in fear from being attacked by the mob (which at one point can be heard imploring the police to “turn him over to us” (yikes!)), and that the cyclist was deliberately blocking them from proceeding through the intersection.
There is always more to the story, but I think it would be naive to present this as an ordinary car strikes cyclist traffic incident.
With the exception of either a) the pedestrian dashing out into the street or b) the driver’s safety being endangered by the pedestrian, neither of which seem remotely evident from the video, I don’t see anything that justifies the driver taking the law into their own hands and endangering a person and their property. Especially with the police seemingly right behind. The pedestrian is within their legal rights to use the crosswalk and even to pause midway and exercise their freedom of speech.
Just as unfathomable is the lack of any actual response of the police. How many police officers does it take to enforce a clear case of vehicular assault? By my count, four armed officers and three police SUVs weren’t enough. How sad.
I’m glad this didn’t work out worse. I doubt they convict the driver, but this works out poorly for everyone even if they do.
The vast majority of the population is going to side with the driver. Had a parade of cyclists suddenly been intentionally blocked while surrounded by a hostile Trump crowd screaming obscenities at them, the cyclists would have rightly felt threatened.
Scared or cornered people and animals normally have a fight or flight reaction. I’d expect that out of the cyclists in my hypothetical example, and that’s what the driver did — something most people will identify with.
Had the blocking move — which significantly escalated an already volatile situation — succeeded, this could have been a disaster. It’s a sure bet a bunch of nut jobs carrying guns were in that parade, so having them trapped in a hostile crowd would be extremely dangerous.
I think amplifying this incident is a mistake. That Trump parade was basically a reaction to the nightly protests that consistently ended in violence, and showing this video does a better job of reinforcing the Trump narrative than the protester narrative.
Why bother defunding the police, they’ve already decided they don’t want to do their job.
Fire them all and replace them with people who want and willing to do the job.
“replace them with people who want and willing to do the job.”
Well I think you’ve stumbled onto a problem there…
Hey, I’d do that job, but my IQ is too high. I think for myself. I value human compassion over the rule of law.
The Florida law is disturbing. The person who is hit does not even need to be part of the “mob”, and could simply be someone on on their way to work. This goes beyond placing the lives of drivers over the lives of vulnerable users, and places simply the need to alleviate fear, potentially irrational fear, over the lives of pedestrians and cyclists who are not even involved in protests. If you are not in a car in Florida, under this law you are basically equivalent to a squirrel and can be legally terminated at will based on the discretion of the driver.
Florida is a horrifying place. It’s scary down there even if you are inside a car.
Unfortunately about 90% of the rest of the country is no safer. As bad as Portland can be, it’s far safer than most other places.
Remember, though, that if a car fleeing a mob is coming at you, you should be able to shoot the driver under the Stand Your Ground law.
Read this morning in the NYT digest, that since May, there’s been 50 incidents of vehicular assault. And I’m sure we’re all seeing the gory details/video being posted. Thanks BP and Jonathan for focusing on the issue.
Here in North Carolina we’ve had several incidents in the past 4 years in which prosecutors have successfully proven to a jury that a perpetrator intended to use their motor vehicle as a weapon to kill or maim another person, usually someone they already knew. Our local police now routinely investigate any sort of personal relationships between crash victims and drivers, to discover any possibility of premeditated intent to cause injury or death.
The cyclist is no victim.
Ian Hinnessy Gulley the black woman who confronted police face to face. If you were there u would see the cyclist was tryna save my moms life and almost lost his as police did nothing and trump supporters have 2 fucks about me and my mother whom were the only blacks out present ……IT WAS FOUL!!! How dare they shut down a protest and allow this to go on… my twin name is Tete Gulley who was killed and it was covered up… EVERYONE WILL SEE REAL SOON