A horrible scene unfolded in Portland’s Hazelwood neighborhood on Tuesday.
Just after 1:30 pm, Portland Police responded to calls about a traffic crash on Northeast 100th and Glisan. A person was lying in the road. By the time the Major Crash Team responded that person was dead. But once on scene, a larger picture of what happened began to unfold.
Investigators were able to piece together that someone driving a truck with a flatbed trailer first hit a bicycle rider two blocks east at 102nd and Glisan and then dragged their body about 600 feet west to 100th. As the driver continued to flee, the person’s bicycle remained lodged under the truck and didn’t come free for another block (at NE Irving) where nearby residents came out of their homes to see what had happened.
According to the PPB, the truck was found one hour later about 3.5 miles away near North Killingsworth and Columbia. The driver, 41-year-old Kenlly Leyvachi, was booked into the Multnomah County Detention Center and charged with Manslaughter in the First Degree, Reckless Driving, and Failure to Perform the Duties of a Driver.
The collision happened near the northeast corner of the 102nd and Glisan intersection. This location has a buffered and unprotected bicycle lane. The Portland Bureau of Transportation recently completed a major bike lane upgrade project on 102nd, but it ended a half-mile north of this location.
This was the first fatal crash with a bicycle riding victim in Portland since December 4th, 2020. There were no bicycle fatalities in 2021. A fatal collision last month was incorrectly reported by the PPB and in the local media as involving an electric bicycle, but it was actually an e-motorbike. I’ve confirmed with a PPB source that the victim in yesterday’s crash was on a standard electric bicycle.
I’ve also been told that the victim was pulling a child trailer that had a dog in it. The dog survived.
This was the second fatal hit-and-run crash involving a driver and vulnerable road user in Portland in less than 24 hours.
On Monday, PPB says a person who was walking on SE 82nd Avenue at Center Street was hit and killed by a driver. The driver in that case, 40-year-old Frederick Deatric Moore, was arrested Wednesday morning and charged with Murder in the Second Degree and Failure to Perform the Duties of a Driver (Hit & Run).
Both of these collisions happened on streets that are on the City of Portland’s “High Crash Network“, a list of streets and intersections with an above average rate of fatal and serious injury crashes. NE 102nd and Glisan is among the top 30 high crash intersections. SE 82nd and Center is adjacent to a popular food cart pod (where advocates and policymakers ended a walk to learn about dangerous conditions in September 2021) and is just a few blocks south of Powell, another top 30 high crash intersection.
Monday’s death on 82nd is the first one that will be logged as being under the jurisdiction of PBOT. The agency formally took over ownership and management of the former highway from the Oregon Department of Transportation back in April.