This morning I witnessed a driver cut off two bicyclists, stop short, and in true team spirit of the sport, the passenger of the vehicle opened the car door, while the car was in motion, in an attempt to door the bicyclists. Upon witnessing this, a sense of righteous indignation filled me; I had no choice but to pursue the vehicle.  About a mile later, completely exhausted, I miraculously caught up to the car at a red light. Please be on the look out for:

Tag #: S89 9GD

Rusty (clunker for cash candidate), late 80’s-early 90’s, dark-bluish American car, possibly an Oldsmobile.

This is the type of unfortunate, unprovoked aggressive behavior that bicyclists have to confront on a regular basis.  Fortunately, we do have rights, as Commander Socorro from the Miami Police Department informed me today in an email exchange:

…if they (the victims) would have wanted to get involved, we could have sought the offenders out and arrested them for a felony”.

For their own reasons, which I can respect, the bicyclists who were directly involved in the incident did not want to escalate it to authorities. Regardless, this should be a lesson to both bicyclists and motorists that aggressive vehicular behavior should and will not be tolerated.

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13 Responses to Seen on the Street: Aggressive Driver Threatens Bicyclists On Virginia Key

  1. Tony Garcia says:

    Awesome Felipe! I hope this is a lesson to d-bag drivers out there to obey the law. Seems silly to me that even with an eye witness that the police were still unwilling to do anything about this obvious crime. What a shame. I hope our elected officials and law enforcement take heed: we are paying attention and will not accept lax enforcement of the law. The law does not apply to motorists first and cyclists and pedestrians second. This is unacceptable. Keep up the vigilance. This is a call to all Transit Miami readers: if you witness or are the victim of motorist negligence please email us or post your story.

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  2. g says:

    “bicyclists have to confront on a regular basis.”

    uhhh…huh? i rode my bike down here for 5 years never once did someone display “unprovoked aggressive behavior” towards me. yes idiots drive in an idiotic fashion so be careful out there and ride defensively… but wtf is a regular basis??? you make it sound as if we’re riding in a warzone, cmon.

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  3. Felipe Azenha says:

    I can give you another example. Just this morning, during the Bike Miami Ride, a vehicle aggressively honked his horn at a group of about 55 riders. I could not clearly understand what the back seat passenger yelled, but it was something along the lines of “…PUTA MADRE CYCLISTAS”! Mind you, this was a ride that had a police escort. Does this type of aggressive behavior happen to me every day? No. But I feel confident to say that “regular basis” is a fair assessment of the situation. Both bicyclists and drivers need to share the road and learn to respect each other. Please see my other post regarding the need for bicyclists to respect cars. http://www.transitmiami.com/2009/08/08/please-share-the-road-fellow-bicyclists/

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  4. Mike Lydon says:

    On my way home from that very ride three men in a Chevy Tahoe grazed by me slowly on Biscayne Boulevard, well within the 3 feet of berth they are required by law to give me as a cyclist. While doing so, they attempted to intimidate me by screaming nonsensically until their bloated metal carapace car had passed by.

    Recently, I had a van behind me on 8th street that nudged my back tire as we sat at a red light. I pulled out my book of cycling laws, pointed to it, inferring that I had every right to be in the middle of the lane while waiting for the light to turn red.

    True, these things don’t happen to me daily, but they do happen frequently enough to warrant our attention and our concern.

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  5. Markus says:

    It is unfortunate, but things like this happen all the time. What I’m surprised about is that the police actually responded. I’m a relatively recent arrival, but when a driver came within three inches at high speed only to pull away after passing on a perfectly clear road (and after being a few feet to the left before overtaking me), I decided to bring this to the police’s attention. The reaction was disheartening to say the least. The Palmetto Bay office would not take the report even - despite having the plate, the time and place. The county PD officer that finally came by said that as I wasn’t hit there was no crime and so they wouldn’t follow up.

    It it war here? No. Is it the worst driving I’ve experienced as a cyclist? It ranks up there with Tehran and Istanbul though it seems it’s not based on malice there.

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  6. J. Mirabent says:

    If this keeps up I’ll have to return to Mountain biking at least the trees don’t step out to hit you.

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  7. JOrge Gaviria says:

    Dear cycling members. I have conducted an investigation into the alleged incident, and have concluded that the following person appears to have been involved in this indecent and barbaric act against our cycling community:

    Ricardo H. Calderon
    d/o/b 2/1959

    1986 Celebrity Chevrolet

    I spoke with him, and confirmed that he was in Key Biscayne at the time of the bicycle incident, although he denies most of the rest of the facts.

    I would be happy to pursue an action against him, pro bono. By the way, he also appears to have skipped the toll without payment. Please circulate to all members of our cycling community.

    Let us all take a strong stance against this type of conduct !

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  8. Enrique says:

    Did we know who was the ciclist so apolice report can be filed agains this guy.

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  9. Felipe Azenha says:

    Jorge,
    Great job! I witnessed the entire incident. I am willing to bet the ranch this guy was drunk. He was all over the road.
    Let me know how I can help. I am not willing to disclose the names of the bicyclists because they said they do not want to be involved. I have directed them to the Transit Miami website. Perhaps with enough encouragement from our readers they may change their minds.
    Thanks Jorge.

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  10. Mike Lydon says:

    Great work gumshoes! I hope the bicyclist summons the courage to come forth and pursue action against his near assailant.

    This aggression will not stand, man.

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  11. Ellen says:

    Involved bicyclist(s): PLEASE come forward and file a police report. You will be drawing the proverbial line in the sand. I echo Mike: “This aggression will not stand, man!”

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  12. Chris G. says:

    All,
    This past Saturday morning, around 5:15 AM, I was running with my full marathon training group, on Key Biscayne. We left the Village Green and headed towards the toll booth on a 14 miler. Since we are running, we ran AGAINST traffic, in the bike lane, two wide, so as not to take up too much of the bike path. Whenever a cyclist would approach, we would shift into a single file formation. Most cyclists still went into the road a little to avoid us, and most were friendly even though we were using “their” lane. Some didn’t respond to our “good mornings”, but that’s a different tale for a different time.
    So, we were going around the nice blind curve at Bear Cut and noticed a cyclist was approaching, so we went single file. About this time, a Ferrari was coming along at a pretty good clip. The left lane was empty, however, the car decided to remain in the right lane, almost clipping the cyclist and forcing some of our runners to go off the shoulder of the road, risking injury. As the car passed, the passengers, who I’m sure were inebriated, screamed out some obscenities to the rider and us. This was at 5:30 in the morning, and on a road that have virtually no traffic!
    Now then, cyclists aren’t always good boys and girls either. On my way to breakfast in the Grove after my run, on Bayshore at 17th Ave, I encountered a peloton of about 70 riders. As I went through the light, I had had to come to a complete stop, as at least seven riders were in the middle of my lane, aka oncoming traffic. As they went by, I was the recipient of a few verbal tirades and one, actually hit my side mirror.
    So, see there are asshole drivers and asshole riders. But we never hear of the asshole runners (j/k).

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  13. Jason says:

    I completely understand about cops not being very helpful. About a year and a half ago I was the victim of a hit and run that left me laying in the street with my bike broken in half (literally two separate pieces held together by shift and brake cables) and the Pinecrest Police department refused to file a report.

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