The Edmond Sun

November 26, 2012

Police: Intoxicated cyclist breaks bike laws, curses at cops

Mark Schlachtenhaufen
The Edmond Sun

EDMOND — An allegedly intoxicated bicyclist attempted to elude a squad car and cursed at Edmond officers, according to an incident report. The bicyclist said the related city rule is unfair.

At about 11:45 p.m. Nov. 16, Edmond Police Sgt. Derick Pickard was driving south on Boulevard in the area of 13th Street, according to an incident report filed by Pickard.

In the area, Pickard spotted a male riding a bicycle down the street along the curb on the oncoming side of the road, the report stated. There was neither a rear reflector or a headlight on the bicycle, it stated.

Edmond’s municipal code — Chapter 10.60 — requires that bicycles in use at night have a lamp on the front and a proper red reflector on the rear. It also requires that every person operating a bicycle upon a roadway, or upon a bicycle route or lane, ride as near to the right-hand side of the way as practicable.

Pickard attempted to speak to the rider as he turned eastbound on 13th Street, the report stated. When the rider looked back and saw the officer was in a squad car, he accelerated and made an abrupt turn back on the sidewalk on the east side of Boulevard, it stated.

The officer located the bicycle traveling east on Tullahoma and stopped the man who put his bike on the ground and walked into the middle of the street, the report stated. As Pickard got out of his squad car, the man stumbled and fell down, it stated.

After the man and his bike were off the road, Pickard explained why he made the stop, the report stated.

When Pickard began to run a warrants check the man said he did not have any, the report stated. He told the officer he was only a few blocks from home and purportedly used an expletive in relation to the stop, it stated.

Pickard stated the male, who had a strong odor of an alcoholic beverage on his breath and person, admitted he had been drinking at a friend’s house. He spoke with slurred and broken speech and was argumentative during the conversation, the report stated.

The man continued to question why he was stopped and the officer continued to explain that his bicycle was not properly equipped for night travel and he was riding on the wrong side of the road, the report stated. The man then fell to the ground, it stated.

Pickard arrested Bob Taylor Washburn, 38, of Edmond, on a public intoxication complaint and learned he had three local warrants for expired tag, no insurance and driving under suspension, the report stated.

Monday evening, Washburn said in his opinion the officer didn’t have a legitimate reason to pull him over, and he thought the headlight issue was just an excuse. Washburn said he was riding from sidewalk to sidewalk. He said the city’s bicycle headlight rule should be like Oklahoma’s lenient motorcycle helmet law.

At the city jail, the suspect was uncooperative and continued to be aggressive and belligerent, the report stated. After a few minutes he calmed down enough so he could be booked, it stated.

Pickard cited the suspect for public intoxication and the warrants and dropped off his bike so he could get it upon his release, the report stated.

In March 2011, the Edmond City Council agreed 5-0 to amend the municipal code to improve bicycle safety on roadways and shared paths. Police had received complaints detailing bicyclists ignoring stop signs or riding in large groups taking up much of the road. | 341-2121, ext. 108