Monday, September 05, 2011

Double standard: cyclist that killed pedestrian not identified

A pedestrian was hit/killed by a cyclist on July 15, but the cyclist still hasn't been identified by the local media. On the other hand, the drunk driver that hit and killed cyclist Yannick Linke was quickly identified, as was even the woman in the car with him.

Is there a double standard being applied by the local media here?

The name of the cyclist wasn't provided by this CBS5 report, but the perp makes a brief appearance in the video of the story.

An earlier post on this story.



At 5:31 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Look hard and you will find it.

I'm sure CBS is on the SFBC pay roll.

At 6:19 PM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

The point is not to learn the man's name. I don't care who he is. I just wonder why the two accidents have been treated differently. Is it because the city's bike community pounced on Linke's death and tried to give it special significance. Instead of simply being a young guy unlucky enough to be hit and killed by a drunk driver, the bike community insisted that he was some kind of martyr in the city's traffic wars, a victim of Masonic Avenue's poor design.

The only thing that both accidents show is that both motorists and cyclists can behave recklessly on city streets.

At 10:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Calder has been charged. The cyclist has not. Once charges are filed, the perpetrator will be identified. If no charges are filed, he/she will never be identified.

There is no double standard here. If you have not been charged with anything, the police cannot parade you around in the media.

At 8:06 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rob wants a damn parade. Hang him high for sins unspeakable (cyclist - shhh)!!!

At 8:47 AM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

The question is, How quickly was Calder charged? Linke was killed on Friday night, and Brian Goebel had a story in Streetsblog on Monday morning naming Calder. Hard to believe that charges were filed so quickly. And though the woman in the car with Calder still hasn't been charged, her name has been published.

Since it's been widely reported that the cyclist who hit the pedestrian ran a red light and hit her when she was in the crosswalk, it's not clear why he hasn't been charged.

Maybe this is explainable, but the process needs to be open and even-handed so that incidents like this don't aggravate the traffic wars on city streets.

At 10:29 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is a matter of Rob not having any idea how citations in CA work. Not surprising since he knows little yet talks so loudly.

Drunk driving, citation on the spot. Running a red light, even with injury, does not equal citation on the spot.

Take off the tinfoil hat.

At 12:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hard to believe that charges were filed so quickly.

An SFPD officer witnessed Calder's car blocks away from the scene of the crime. Hit and Run.

SFPD did blood-alcohol tests on Calder, and he was over the legal limit. DUI.

Actual physical or SFPD observed evidence in hand of the SFPD for charges - this makes it cut and dried to make a case to take to the Grand Jury for an indictment.

For the Embarcadero case, there is no direct evidence to the crime other than witness testimony, so the SFPD and the DA have to build a case, piece by piece. "Widely reported" isn't "evidence". It would be bad for them to rush a case to the Grand Jury and not get an indictment. Such is the way of the world.

The pedestrian killed by the MUNI driver a few weeks back was making a left turn in an intersection controlled by a stop sign, and killed a pedestrian that was 90% of the way through the crosswalk. That driver has not been named. That incident bears far more similarity to the cyclist incident than the Calder incident.

It is even-handed, and follows the protocols we have built into our Government. If they build a case, you'll get your pound of flesh.

At 11:10 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow, Rob sure shut the fuck up quick.

At 12:00 PM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

I "shut up" because I'm not a know-it-all. Anonymous made a substantive comment that directly addresses the questions I raised. Good for him/her.

But I still have questions about the process: Does the SFPD have to go to the Grand Jury for an indictment or can they just go to the District Attorney to bring charges?

"An SFPD officer witnessed Calder's car blocks away from the scene of the crime. Hit and Run."

But the officer didn't actually witness the accident, so the hit-and-run case can't be made on that basis alone. The DUI case is different, since that test was made shortly after the accident.

I'm not at all interested in getting a "pound of flesh" from the cyclist who hit the pedestrian. One way or the other, he'll end up being penalized for his negligence.

I suspected that there was a double standard operating in the incident, but I'm willing to admit I was wrong and that my suspicions were unfounded.

At 12:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

But the officer didn't actually witness the accident, so the hit-and-run case can't be made on that basis alone.

The officer did witness the dent in the car, with paint from the bike, and witnesses indicated that Calder's car was the one that hit Linke. Calder stopped to move the bike, witnesses got his license plate. When they found the car, the plates matched.

This is a more objective fact than "The cyclist ran the red light", which is more "subjective" because there is no physical evidence tied to the testimony, so it's less bulletproof.

Contrast this incident also to the German tourist who made the illegal right turn onto 101 from Market at Octavia and ran over a cyclist last week. In this case, it is very clear that the car made the illegal right turn by placement of the car, testimony from the victim who is still alive, and confession from the perpetrator. In this instance, still no citation or charges, name not released. This may not change, they may not decide to bother with criminal charges and since the driver was not a citizen, they cannot do anything about his/her driver's license anyway. The police report will allow the victim to go for monetary compensation.

At 3:06 PM, Anonymous Bob Assderson said...

Ped killed by driver, no name released. Vast gov't and media conspiracy? Stay tuned.

At 9:09 AM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

No "conspiracy," vast or otherwise has been alleged here.

At 9:38 AM, Anonymous Bob Assderson said...

Just a hidden double-standard. Huge difference.

At 9:43 AM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

What are you talking about?

At 10:37 AM, Anonymous Bob Assderson said...

"Is there a double standard being applied by the local media here?"

Sounds like you are saying there is a conspiracy.

Hidden double standard = conspiracy.

There is none, take off the tin foil hat.

At 5:11 PM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

A double standard is not the same thing as a conspiracy, but making distinctions clearly isn't your strong suit.

Based on the mystifying deference City Hall gives you bike nuts, I was suspcious about it. If a previous commenter is correct, turns out that there may be an innocent explanation for the anonymity accorded the cyclist who ran down the pedestrian.

At 9:44 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would not call it "innocent". I would call it "consistent". Consistently bad.

People who run down other people with their vehicles should be treated more harshly, no matter what vehicle. This sorry incident with the cyclist has the one "silver lining" in that the "anti-bike" brigade is just now finding out - if you run someone down, the police and courts don't seem to care. The "anti-bike" people got all in a hissyfit because the cyclist was not strung up immediately, but now they are starting to find out that the reason we are always so pissed off is that we know if we get run down, no justice is served.

Can say this for you Rob. You didn't do any research and accused SFPD and the media of having a double standard, but when this was pointed out to you, you digested that information. Most of the "anti-bike" folk are blind and deaf when it comes to the real truth about how our streets really work.

At 4:50 PM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

I'm still not completely convinced that some kind of double standard isn't at work here. I don't see any real "research" in any of the comments arguing the contrary, just assertions without evidence to back them up.

At 9:42 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I "shut up" because I'm not a know-it-all. Anonymous made a substantive comment that directly addresses the questions I raised. Good for him/her.

Still things the media is in SFBC's back pocket.

Ignorance of your level knows no bounds.

At 12:16 PM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

You still haven't made a substantive comment, unlike the other "Anonymous." Name a newspaper, website, or blog---other than this one---that's been critical of the great bike revolution in SF? Beyond Chron essentialy ignores the bike issue, but the rest join the lemming-like rush to create gridlock in the city.

But it's not just about the media but also about the cops and the D.A. What exactly is the protocol for cases like this? When is a name released and when is it not? If there are clear guidelines, I'd like to know what they are, not only to ease my suspicions but for future reference in the city's ongoing traffic wars.

At 12:26 PM, Anonymous Bob Assderson said...

Your suspicions are unfounded. Case closed. No citation needed. You are a fuck.

But if you need something to read, probably skipped over it since it was actually really informative, here you go:

BG: But when officers are investigating a traffic collision involving a bicyclist, and this is what I’m trying to understand, very often the driver is not cited, the driver is not charged, and I don’t know if this is true or not, but I keep hearing that the officers have to have some kind of special training in order to properly investigate collisions. Can you clear that up for me, is that true or not?

AC: Some of the officers have special training, especially reconstructionists, that’s why we have a major accident investigative team called MAI (Major Accident Investigation). And they’re trained, and they go out with the total station and they take all the measurements and recreate it, and everything else like that. The reason we normally do not cite is because if you issue a citation you muddy up the District Attorney’s case for issuing a charge of vehicular manslaughter, or something like that, whatever the criminal charge is going to be. So that’s why you don’t issue a citation. And also you don’t issue a citation based on the original facts because you don’t know if the original facts are true or not, and in a lot of them we’ve had situations where what is believed to have been the initial – I don’t want to compromise any cases we’ve got now, but what you believe the initial story to be is not what is the true story once we review it with the coroner. Maybe we might find film, cameras, additional witnesses, the physical evidence when the reconstruction is put together that says ‘this couldn’t have happened in the way it’s said in the first report.’ And that’s why you have a preliminary report. And I’ve been around long enough that you look at them and you go ‘Huh?’ Because if you’ve got an intersection and you’ve got four people, one at each corner, you’ve got four different perspectives, and you have four different stories. Two witnesses said one thing to the officers. They both said the same thing. And when we finished, and then when we found that there was a camera on it, and then when we looked at it and put it back together, the two witness statements were partially correct, but totally – for the accident facts, totally not true. And it was because of perception versus what really happened.

At 4:59 PM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

That's interesting and encouraging to know that they're cautious about issuing citations and coming to a conclusion too early. But it doesn't shed any light on the protocol about releasing names.

For future reference: you have to forgo the juvenile insults or I'll stop posting your comments.

At 7:39 AM, Anonymous Bob Assderson said...

No citation, no releasing of the name. Exactly what Anon @ comment #3 said. Which you seemed to grasp, but then decided not to.


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