Friday’s cycling incident in Downtown Los Angeles that landed a 42-year-old woman in the ICU has not been filed as a hit-and-run case by police. The accident was initially alleged to be a road rage hit-and-run involving cyclist Susanna Schick and the driver of a white Lexus, but police say nay.
Lt. Paul Vernon of the LAPD told blogdowntown, “There’s a great deal of discrepancy. There is no crime here. She fell down on her bicycle.”
The blog says the first series of events of the night are not in dispute. Schick, aka Pinkyracer, was riding down Spring Street around 11:30pm Friday when a car pulled out of a garage and swerved into the green bike lane. Opposing previous accounts of what happened next, the report says Schick pedaled up to the car, hit the side view mirror and yelled at the driver and passenger, who rolled up their windows. Schick’s statement notes she does not believe the car hit her, but her friend, Jennifer Beatty, who has been interviewed by numerous media outlets, said it was a “physical improbability” that the damage to Schick’s rear wheel, which now looks like a “bike taco,” could occur without a collision. BikingInLA, however, says “the supposedly tacoed rear wheel is actually a relatively minor bend.”
Early reports indicated no witnesses had come forward, but Blogdowntown has uncovered otherwise: “Vernon says that two police officers witnessed the incident and reported seeing Schick continue on her bicycle for another block or two until the car turned right and she wobbled and fell over, tumbling off the bike. The two police also say that there was no collision with a car.”
Sgt. Krumer, the department’s highly respected liaison to the cycling community, told the biking blog police attempted to interview Schick at the scene of the accident, but, as noted above, she did not mention a collision. Due to Schick’s injuries, which include a concussion, police will try to interview her again to clarify the details, says Krumer. Contrary to earlier information in the case, Krumer says a police report was taken the night of the accident.
Vernon also offered answers for two more of the case’s mysteries. The officers call the ambulance and also returned the bike to Schick’s house.
Unconvinced of the police report, Beatty explained that Spring Street is relatively smooth with no drains or other obstacles that would cause the experienced cyclist to wobble and tumble. Police are searching for video evidence of the incident.
Schick is recovering at USC County Hospital from a concussion, broken collarbone, six broken ribs, three pelvic fractures and facial lacerations. She was wearing a helmet at the time of the incident. Friends of the victim say two detectives interviewed Schick at the hospital and claim the officers tried to convince Schick she was wrong about the hit-and-run.
The ChipIn fund created by Schick’s friends on Sunday to help pay for her medical expenses has raised over $5,200.