Furious driver pursues bicyclist through Olmsted Park

IMAGE(http://johnakeithrealestate.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/08/olmsted.jpg)

Neal Simpson, editor of the Brookline Patch hyperlocal site, scoops the major media sites (apparently) with a story about a driver who was so pissed off with a bicyclist (who he accused of damaging his car) that he tried to run him down by driving through part of the Olmsted Park.

Police say Robert Nicosia, 66, sped through the park from the Jamaicaway to Pond Avenue, driving over grass and flower beds and weaving through trees at a time when the park was filled with people enjoying the warm Saturday afternoon.

A witness estimated the driver's speed at "30 to 40 miles per hour".

The suspect is innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

Photo courtesy of Bikeable, Wikimedia.org, used under Creative Commons license

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douche-

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nozzle.

in a Lexus.

(It's a new feature in the 2010 models.)

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Holy crap!

It's a good thing we have citizens like this to keep those annoying bicyclists in line! So what if some
flowers or possibly small animals were sacrificed in the process!

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Yeesh, lose-lose

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The bicyclist was a dickhead for using his bike lock to destroy the guy's side mirror.

The driver became an even bigger dickhead by dismissing everyone else's safety in the park by driving all over the paths and avoiding cops just to chase some dickhead bicyclist.

Hopefully we don't need a 150-comment thread to determine they're both jackasses this time.

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Yeah, John Keith should have

Yeah, John Keith should have included that part of the article. His presentation is mis-leading. Moral of the story, don't get involved in road rage whether you are a cyclist or a driver, because who knows how much more Masshole the other guy might be willing to get.

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Stay on topic!

Why does everything have to revolve back to the author and not about the story?

I didn't include the whole story because then you wouldn't need to click through to read it and then it's basically stealing the article.

Don't take the fun out of things. :O)

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Well if you are trying to get

Well if you are trying to get a bikes v. car argument going, then you made the right move. I just didn't realize that was the plan. Damn those cars, they all suck!

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Fixed it

You're right.

Edited the above story to include driver's side of story.

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I think i put sliiiiiightly

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I think i put sliiiiiightly more blame on the person behind the wheel of a vehicle rampaging through a public park.

Maybe it's bias, but I feel that someone capable of trying to kill someone because they damaged a lexus was probably completely at fault in the "right of way" discussion.

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Don't think of it as the guy

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Don't think of it as the guy being pissed off because someone damaged his "precious car". Think of it as the bicyclist stealing money from the driver. When you damage a car, you are stealing money from the owner. Why? Because unless they are going to keep the car for the rest of their LIFE, they are going to have to trade it in or sell it at some point. And they will receive less money for it if it is damaged.

And if the damage HAS to be fixed (for example, a broken mirror), then the bicyclist is REALLY costing the person money out of pocket. A Lexus side mirror is not cheap. We're talking hundreds of dollars here.

So, imagine the Lexus driver had just come out of a bank, and the bicyclist swooped in and stole an envelope filled with $200 from the guy.

Now who's the fucking jerkoff?

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We don't know who the jerkoff is.

Lexus man could have run a red light, stop sign, merged without signalling. The bicyclist felt that his personal space was infracted by a two ton machine. I know that someone who rides a bike doesn't contribute as much to society as someone who drives a Lexus, but perhaps he felt endangered by Lexman's driving, and in a moment of frustration took out the mirror. He probably doesn't even use it anyways!!

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Innocent people do not

Innocent people do not usually run from the police which leads me to believe that the bicyclist was the instigator of the incident (no surprise there). Which of course do not excuse the stupid antics of the guy in the car.

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Your "no surprise there"

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Your "no surprise there" comment gives one good reason that someone might run from the police even if they were innocent: maybe they're afraid the police might be someone like you who assumes that the bicyclist somehow brought upon themself this homicidal madman who'd plow through a park at high speed in a car.

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I'm inclined to agree with you, but...

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My guess is that the driver did something illegal and dangerous in his car, and the cyclist did something more illegal and less dangerous with his u-lock.

HOWEVER, the driver's behavior was substantially nutty -- if you caught someone driving offroad in a Lexus in a city park, would you take their story at face value? (How do we know he didn't clip a tree with his mirror, and then make up an excuse? Just for example.) And similarly, as so many people like to tell cyclists, never forget the laws of physics (as if we did not know them very well already). If some nut in a Lexus makes to run me down on my bike, I am not going to try to reason with him, or stand my ground because I did nothing wrong -- I'm going to run like hell.

So even though I think the cyclist probably did break his mirror, it's also not that hard to believe that the driver is making stuff up.

And I would add, against the u-lock angle, how many of us carry our u-locks in a way that we can easily whip them out and sling them at things? They're either securely stashed in a bag pocket, meaning undoing at least one clip and a velcro flap behind my back (my bag), or in a lock carrier on the bike that requires two hands to remove the lock (my lock carrier). It's possible it was just stuffed in a giant pocket and easy to whip out, but that's not the most likely case.

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Actually, I believe Olmsted

Actually, I believe Olmsted Park has separate paths for bicyclists and pedestrians on the Brookline side.

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Yeah

But if I were given a buck for every runner, baby stroller, dog, etc in the bike path that should be on the ped path, I'd have enough money each week to buy a four pack of Duvel. *

*I'd only collect money for intruders when I'm actually in the park. If I were to collect money at all times, I'd have enough money to throw a huge belgian beer bash, and I'd invite everyone from UH. Except Kaz and Eeka. And the two pretentious douches that want to ban bicycles from public parks (NotWhitey and cowsandmilk). They can have Coors Light and like it. When the mountains are as blue as the Summer's Eve box, they're ready and no need to worry about them being not-so-fresh!

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UH would be a lot better if

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UH would be a lot better if people stopped with the personal attacks. As soon as it happens once, other people see that and assume it's OK for them as well.

I for one get enough drama from office politics and family. I don't have to seek it out on the Internet.

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I don't want to ban bikes

I don't want to ban bikes from public parks. I am perfectly in favor of them being places like Olmsted Park where they have their own path. When I run there, I stay on the pedestrian paths, going on the dirt paths through the woods to stay out of their way. And I'm all for things like the Minuteman Bike path.

I'm against them getting pissed off and yelling at runners for being in their way on the esplanade when they could be on Comm Ave a block away. And I'm not for banning their presence, I was just happy a bridge being repaired might make some of them realize the other option is a lot better. I see cyclists do passive-aggressive things like going off onto the dirt to try to go around a pedestrian, and seen them wipe out. Why you would go on a ride each morning that involves getting angry at people is beyond me.

(Responding here instead of the other place, I clearly am not talking about the part with the white dotted lines that is a bike path, because there is not dirt there, I'm talking about the "runners" path on the esplanade, where there is dirt on either side)

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and I'll freely admit, the

and I'll freely admit, the reason cyclists often take a right at the fork and go on the pedestrian path instead of the bike path is because pedestrians are in their way on the bike path.

But I just view that as all the more reason they should decide to reduce their stress levels and head down comm ave.

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Depends

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What part of Comm Ave are we talking about? Because from the Fenway fly-over to the Gardens it's a left-hand bike lane, so there's no parked cars to worry about.

However, I could totally understand why bikers would want to use the Esplanade instead of Comm Ave. It's just a much nicer ride. For that matter, you could tell a runner to use the Comm Ave park that goes right down the middle. I never see any bikers there.

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Comm. Ave. mall not a good place to bike

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Comm. Ave. mall is not be a good place for bikers -- it's mainly filled with people leisurely walking their dogs, taking photos of the statues, parents with their little toddlers and strollers, and a healthy dose of runners. Not a place for speeding cyclists, though I have seem them zig zag around the above-mentioned from time to time. Oh, also, lately I've noticed joggers doing their stretches, pushups, etc. in the middle of the pavement instead of on the grass... which is odd, but to each is own. The bike lanes on Comm. Ave. in the Back Bay are used more and more -- to the extent that sometimes there are bike traffic backups and cyclists will split off to the non bike lane side of the street and the sidewalk.

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Although I find his

Although I find his suggestion repugnant, since it goes entirely against the concept of shared recreational facilities, the bike lanes on Comm Ave. in the Back Bay at least do not have the double parked car problem.

Personally, I've given up on the idea that we can restrict transit corridors for single type use. Cars need to share the road with bikes, bikes need to share the paths with pedestrians. Any other approach yields frustration. I'm much happier on the Southwest Corridor bike path now that I no longer feel compelled to scream "bike path" at every pedestrian I pass. I cannot change their behavior, just as a car driver cannot change mine. We all need to accommodate each other.

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I do get frustrated with

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I do get frustrated with pedestrians on the Esplanade, because a fair few of them are not walking to the right, are bunched up in a Reservoir Dogseque formation, or are pushing doublewide strollers next to their friend's doublewide while in the middle of the path. Comm Ave is okay, but the scenery here's better, you get a nicer breeze, and there are no stop lights. Then again, I get pedestrian rage even when I'm a pedestrian, since for some reason tons of people downtown think stopping in the middle of one of our narrow sidewalks is a great idea, and I don't particularly like having to navigate through a huge group of people while walking, either.

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What a concept

Fabulous, especially this takeoff -- with one little modification, perfect for the Esplanade or anywhere in the South End.
(Joke! Love ya, South Enders!)

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Accept the things we cannot change.

Release the anger and your experience will improve. Trust me on this. I used to feel the same way about everything you describe. And down deep, I still am annoyed by the illogic of such behaviors. The problem is that what is illogical to you or me, may make perfect sense to the other person using the path.

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Amen to that

"Release the anger and your experience will improve." Amen to that. I still get frustrated too often, but this is SUCH a useful mantra.

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Another one!

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"Serenity now...serenity now..."

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the Comm Ave bike lane is useless

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the bike lanes on Comm Ave. in the Back Bay at least do not have the double parked car problem.

No, instead you get to try and dodge two lanes of traffic flying at you doing 40+MPH just to get into the lane. At least, that's the case from around Mass Ave.

And then once you're in, you run the new and exciting danger of being left-hooked. And if you want to make a right, you have to cross two lanes of high-speed traffic.

It's the most unsafe I've ever felt on a bike in Boston. Why the hell did they encourage people to use Comm Ave when there are multiple quiet residential streets running parallel to it?!

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Now there's an interesting

Now there's an interesting point. I haven't actually ridden in these lanes and I hadn't considered the possible difficulty getting into and out of them. But I have to disagree with your second and third points.

  • How is a left hook any different from a right? We are trading one peril for another equivalent peril, no net change.
  • If the lane is on the right, I'll need to cross two lanes of traffic in order to make a left turn, so again, we are trading one difficulty for another equivalent difficulty.

Considering the fact of needing to be able to merge and cross lanes of traffic in order to safely ride in the city anyway, I'm not so sure your first point is even all that valid, but I'll give it to you. I consider it more than made up for by the lack of opening doors or double parked vehicles.

All in all, though, you are right to suggest side streets. Bike lanes on Marlborough St. would be great.

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Waah.

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For getting into and out of the lane, there are bike boxes. At every intersection where you need to make a right turn, there's room at the signal. Just pull yourself up onto the left curb at the intersection and wait for the light to change and go with the cross traffic if you feel unsafe to make lane changes.

By being left of traffic you are afforded a few advantages over driving on the right: 1) no getting doored, 2) much less likely to get cheese-grated because you are on the driver's side of the vehicle AND more readily seen (nothing but a fence on the other side of you), and 3) left-hooking is far less frequent than right-hooking (see point #2, plus most turning traffic is heading towards Newbury/Copley/Boylston/etc).

Part of the reason for putting them there instead of the other parallel roads is because of its 2-way nature and because it was wide enough to add them without removing lanes of traffic. It will also allow them to connect it into a greater grid of bike lanes. At the west end of Marlborough, they'd have to get you to Charlesgate or make you turn on from Mass Ave just to get from Comm Ave anyways to get further downtown from Kenmore and beyond. Going west, you'd go down Beacon(??), Newbury(???), Public Alley #23423423423(?) instead of Comm Ave?

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Bike people have become like car people

Whoever's faster can throw down some nasty language and then make a getaway. The car people have done it forever and the bike people do it when they get the chance. Runners do it to walkers. It's cowardice in any case.

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yeah, people don't seem to be able to read

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But if I were given a buck for every runner, baby stroller, dog, etc in the bike path that should be on the ped path, I'd have enough money each week to buy a four pack of Duvel.

Ding ding ding. There are signs at EVERY intersection with arrows..."bike only" and "walk only". Yet I find myself dodging baby strollers, dogs (I'm not sure which is worse, dogs off the leash and small children (the latter is the most frightening, because they're so unpredictable and so vulnerable.

I understand people not wanting to take the pedestrian path at night where it dips into the woods, but the section immediately south of Rt 9 is usually full of peds on the bike path. Maybe painting a line down the middle would help reinforce the idea of it being a 'road' with rules? (I think the same thing should be done with the esplenade path.)

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channelling Sean Connery

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Thru David Mammet:

"There goes the next Chief of Police..."

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As I mentioned in the last

As I mentioned in the last bike accident post, people are idiots. In this case two idiots combined to create a greater idiocy force field than either could muster alone.

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I unpublished a link to somebody's LinkedIn profile

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My apologies, but given that the age one can infer from that was nowhere near the age given in the Patch account, it might not be the same guy. If it turns out it is the same guy, I'll republish the comment, but I'd rather err on the side of caution when it comes to "outing" a potential homicidal maniac.

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huh?

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The driver's age is listed as 66. The photo in the LinkedIn profile showed a guy almost that age with a long career.

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Doesn't quite add up

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The LinkedIn guy graduated high school in 1972. Assuming he was 18 at the time, that'd make him 56, not 66.

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If I had a reporter who said

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If I had a reporter who said "Hey, this guy has the same name as this accused criminal, so let's drag his reputation through the dirt forever in the search engines, just in case it's the same guy," I would smack that reporter to the curb.

Good on Adam for unpublishing this time, though I would go further than Adam and institute preventative measures, because this keeps happening.

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Sounds like the bicyclist was

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Sounds like the bicyclist was a victim of an assault with a deadly weapon.

However that doesn't mean that the bicyclist wasn't also engaging in road rage or vigilante 'justice' (even some of the old UH regulars bicyclists have bragged in the past about smashing a tail light or window punitively), which in my book does not count towards any good guy merit badge.

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Good for the driver. If some

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Good for the driver. If some prick broke my mirror and ran for it like a coward I would have chased him too. I love my bike as much as the next guy but you nuthuggers need to wake up, this kid caused damage to someone's property and ran, he was the criminal.

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No sense of proportion

OH such a BIG MAN you are. You would have chased him on foot, of course, and gone man-to-man? Or would you just be the total motorized coward who hides in his shell and uses his pinky toe to tap the gas pedal to express his rage? So the million pound motorized terrorist is the victim? Oh please.

Something tells me that this old guy was driving his late model Viagra and had his masculinity challenged by somebody he thought beneath him. He then threatened the cyclist and the cyclist got his nads puffy. Bike lock <<<<< murderous old geezer missing his balls in a giant machine.

Too fucking bad. May he rot in jail with the little people and get his ass kicked for thinking he's such a big man that he can act like a terrorist.

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Yeah because getting out of

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Yeah because getting out of my car and running after someone riding a bike is the best way to catch someone. I would deal with the any charges brought against me as long as some little snot nose on a bike was held responsible for their actions. The guy in the car didn't hurt anyone from what I read so a traffic ticket would be worth the ultra cool tough bike rider on his trendy singlespeed being charged close to a grand for body shop bills.

How was he acting like a terrorist when his private property was damaged? I am glad you hope he rots in jail while the guy who broke a mirror (a safety requirement by the way) gets to pedal himself into a park to escape being held accountable for his crime. Do you also hope the tough guy on the bike gets to rot in jail and get his ass kicked for his crime? Thought not.

Oh and way to exaggerate. Go to the Other Side cafe and smoke some Cloves and feel good about yourself there SwiryGrrl.

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I am also glad to see the

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I am also glad to see the Swirlygrrl thinks it is okay to react to someone yelling at them by wielding a 3+ lb lock as a weapon and causing damage to someone's property. Young lady, you are the one who sounds like a fucking terrorist. Not only that but you sound like a bigot for making assumptions based on their mode of transportation and age.

Why don't you and whatever man in your life come on down to Adams Street in Dot and see how far you get after smashing my mirror.

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You really believe....

...that someone has the right to speed down a path in a car when that path is not open to automotive vehicles (and is limited to pedestrians and bicycle riders)?

Ladt time I looked, reckless endangerment of others was considered a more serious offense than propery damage.

Just how far do you think one can go in breaking the law oneself in order to get revenge on someone?

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I never once mentioned

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I never once mentioned revenge, only accountability. Both parties were idiots, I never disagreed with that. I just think it is repulsive how everyone is rooting for the biker like what they did was acceptable behavior. Were any of you there? Did any of you see the events up to the mirror being smashed? The facts are that he broke a dudes mirror and ran through a park as to avoid arrest, and the victim gave chase in a pretty retarded way, as to get to a person that committed a felony against them(http://www.masscriminaldefense.com/maliciousdamage...). Who is the coward here?

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It's sad to see....

...that you (or anyone else) feel it is okay to violate the law (and risk harming innocent people) in order to "uphold the law".

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Also leaving the scene of an

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Also leaving the scene of an accident is a crime as well, or does the law not work the other way around?

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