By Patrick Brady
Published: Nov. 2, 2009
A Los Angeles Superior Court jury on Monday found Dr. Christopher Thomas Thompson guilty of assaulting cyclists by abruptly stopping his car in front of them on a hilly Los Angeles County road last year.
Thompson, a former emergency room doctor, was found guilty of six felonies and one misdemeanor and could face as much as five years in prison.
He was remanded and ordered held without bail until sentencing. He was handcuffed in the courtroom after the verdict was read.
Thompson was accused of assault with a deadly weapon, reckless driving causing specified bodily injury, battery with serious bodily injury and mayhem. The most serious charges stem from a July 4, 2008, incident on Mandeville Canyon Road, the road where Thompson lives, where he was accused of abruptly stopping his car in front of two cyclists. Other charges relate to a similar incident on the same road that did not result in injuries.
In the July 4 incident, the two cyclists hit the rear of Thompson’s car; one slammed through the rear window, the other catapulted over the car into the road. In the earlier incident, the cyclists said they narrowly avoided hitting the rear of Thompson’s car.
Thompson’s lawyer had argued that the cyclists were belligerent and may have fallen because of the inherent instability of bicycles. He suggested that in any case the incident was accidental, not criminal.
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