When guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have bicycles

We’ve all seen a cyclist like Chris Bucchere. You know the type: dressed in faux Lance Armstrong spandex, displaying contemptuous disregard for everyone else on the road. Bucchere, a San Francisco computer geek, is America’s first cyclist convicted of vehicular homicide, after he blew through three lights, a crosswalk, and an elderly San Bruno man whom he maimed in front of his wife.

Bucchere then went to an online forum of fellow we-own-the-road bicycle weenies, and typed up pretty much the same kind of contempt for his victim. What did he learn from the incident? That he should always wear a helmet, or he might get hurt. After being told how bad that looked, he went back and added a lame: “hope he ends up OK.” He didn’t; he lingered for four days and died. Bucchere, hoist by his own heartless post, his own reckless riding, and offered a tempting plea deal, pled guilty to vehicular homicide and will be sentenced — the prosecution is asking only for probation — in August.

A cyclist has pleaded guilty to vehicular manslaughter after running down a 71-year-old pedestrian in what San Francisco’s top prosecutor said appeared to be the first conviction of its kind in the US.

Under the unusual plea deal last week, Chris Bucchere, 37, would not serve any jail time but would be sentenced to three years probation and 1,000 hours of community service….

Bucchere, a software engineer from San Francisco had been riding recklessly and had run three red lights when he struck Hui as he and his wife crossed a street in the Castro district of San Francisco on 29 March 2012, prosecutors said.

Hui died four days later from his injuries.

via San Francisco cyclist guilty of manslaughter in legal first | World news | guardian.co.uk.

Apart from the felony rap — which may yet be reduced to a misdemeanor by one of California’s weak-as-water judges — Buccere got off remarkably lightly, with probation and community service. (Given what we’ve seen of his character already, he’ll find some way to weasel out of that). He was going over 35 in a 25 zone, trying to beat his personal record for a commute to work, and made no effort to stop at stop signs or red lights, including the one he ran when he killed Hui. The prosecutors had him dead to rights via witnesses (including other bike riders), surveillance footage, and his own GPS.

A bicycle is a pleasant and fun way to travel, and done right, it’s healthy for everybody. We try to ride every day, in season. But some people who make a cult of it are a real problem. You can see both kinds of bike riders discussing this accident in this forum thread.

And human life is a remarkably fragile thing. The people who want to ban guns want to be safe, and they think (however mistakenly) that will do it. In fact, California has some ridiculously strict gun laws. What good did that do Sutchi Hui? None at all. Because California also has its share of self-centered, narcissistic and reckless bike riders. And since it also has incredibly permissive courts and prosecutors, neither that, nor the Golden State’s gun crime, have any prospect of changing.

6 thoughts on “When guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have bicycles

  1. Andy

    The judge probably said,show me the money! This is a travesty of justice,where is the MSM on this one?Who I guess it was because the victim wasn’t black!Pick and choose that’s the way it is today.Be prepared and ready.Keep your powder dry.

    1. OldBikr

      I understand the victims family is seeking redress in civil court for a wrongful death. It is not over yet.

  2. Aesop

    Civilly, he’s about to be homeless. There are no shortage of ambulance chasers that’ll seek, and get, everything but his spandex underpants, in perpetuity.

    And don’t assume some upset and upstanding member of the Chinese community in SF won’t see to it that some tong arranges for biker boy to have an “accident” with a couple of steel pipes to the knees.

    While I’d rather see the state simply throw him in Cocoran for 10 years, I’ll settle for street justice.
    And after a couple of more of these, the bicycle thugs will be on notice.

    BTW, this means that if someone in a car in SF decides to take out a biker, the template is now probabtion, and a wrist slap. Sauce for the goose…

  3. TRX

    Because my two-wheeled vehicle has a motor on it, I have to have it inspected, registered, display a license plate, have a driver’s license with an endorsement showing I paid for and passed a supplemental test, carry current state-recognized insurance, and pay personal property tax yearly. My vehicle must have a minimum amount of tread on the tires, have operational brakes, a headlight, a taillight, turn signals, and mirrors. I am required to operate under the same traffic rules as cars and trucks.

    Since bicycles can go at least as fast as motorcycles in typical urban situations (and the media speed for motorcycle fatalities is just over 30mph), I don’t see why bicyclists are allowed to operate vehicles with no training, registration, lighting, or insurance, or why they don’t have to obey the same rules of operation as motorized traffic.

    Also, considering how dangerous bicycles are, maybe full-face helmets and leathers might be a good idea – the little foam footballs they like to wear don’t even come close to DOT helmet requirements, much less Snell certification.

    Back in the 1970s when I first got my driver’s license, pedestrians had absolute right of way on highways. Bicycles yielded to pedestrians, and motor vehicles had to yield to both. This changed 20-odd years ago, to “may not obstruct traffic.” A lot of pedestrians and bicyclists had a hard time understanding this, and wound up as road kill when they ran out into traffic, expecting it to yield. (traffic laws for your state may be different)

  4. Smokey Behr

    I see this kind of crap all the time. Bicyclists riding too fast, on the sidewalk, or against traffic, and when they pull out or run in front of you, they act like it’s your fault. I’m waiting for the day that some idiot on a DUIcycle comes squirting out across the road from the sidewalk and dents my truck.

    1. Aesop

      Bear in mind that the SF variety of cyclists have become essentially roving FlashMobs of thugs, frequently blocking traffic, and a hazard to all and sundry.

      My solution, if forced to function in the Bay Area, would be to carry several lengths of broomhandle (or purchase a case of cheap walking sticks), which seldom mesh well when shoved/thrown into spokes and gears. But I’m a bastard like that.

      There’s nothing these self-righteous two-wheeled jackholes need so much as a good thumping on a daily basis.

Comments are closed.