Phoenix fire dispatcher dies after I-17 wrong-way crash

Victim: Megan Lange, 26/F  southbound on I-17 in central Phoenix ~ 1AM (Tuesday 1/27/2015) was killed by wrong-way driver, who police suspect was impaired. Then today (thursday) it was in news: “A hospital lab analysis of Martin’s blood sample had a blood-alcohol content level of 0.313 percent, nearly four times the state’s legal limit of 0.08 percent, a DPS officer said”

Check out the headon tag for more of these.

Continue reading Phoenix fire dispatcher dies after I-17 wrong-way crash

University Drive textured Bike Lane

The project area is University Drive between about Priest and Farmer. There are other aspects of the project I like very much, e.g. the new raised medians. These should make the road safer for all users. The speed limit is still posted at 40mph, I encourage the city to lower the limit to 35mph, which would make the road even safer for everyone.

In a nutshell, the problem is the City placed 2′ of texturing in a 6′ bike lane, leaving only 2.5′ of usable surface (the gutter pan is the remaining 1.5′). I have a photo gallery (or most of same pics on a public facebook album) of some of the issues revolving around the texture in the bike lane. Continue reading University Drive textured Bike Lane

Vehicular Assault

Arizona has no such crime, nor do we have a vehicular homicide statue. You’ve either assaulted someone or not; if you use a vehicle in an assault, you will be charged with aggravated assault, a serious felony. These cases far more commonly involve impaired drivers — an impaired driver who causes a crash w/injury are routinely charged with aggravated assault; e.g. the driver in the pedicab incident (sentenced to 4 years in prison). However from time to time, there are drivers who are just plain angry over something or other.

There’s a mis-conception that assault, §13-1203 requires causing actual physical  injury; but that is not the case, merely “Intentionally placing another person in reasonable apprehension of imminent physical injury” creates the crime of assault. And aggravated assault  §13-1204 is just an assault committed with some listed factor; in cases involving a motor vehicle: “If the person uses a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument”, or if the victim is seriously injured regardless of how.

[ Also see  §13-1201, and  §13-1202 which are the crimes of “Endangerment”, and “Threatening or intimidating”, respectively. These all sort of play together, note the statute numbering: 1201,2,3,4 ]

Also, in case you were wondering:

28-3304. Mandatory revocation of license; definition
A. In addition to the grounds for mandatory revocation provided.. the department shall immediately revoke the license of a driver…
1. A homicide or aggravated assault resulting from the operation of a motor vehicle. [effectively this causes a 3 year revocation per 28-3315E1]

Here are the curious cases of Theresa Depiero and Holly Solomon Continue reading Vehicular Assault

Today’s car-crime wrapup

remember, these are only the most-sensational ones; there were undoubtedly dozens of hit and runs, and various other assorted DUIs, serious injuries, and deaths.

In Avondale (Phoenix metro area, “west valley”)

Police: Meth fueled high-speed chase with children in car / A routine traffic stop in the West Valley took a violent turn on Wednesday night after police said a man shoved a woman out of a car and led officers on a high-speed chase down 75th Avenue with the woman’s children in the car, according to court records. Avondale police initially tried to stop the car 35-year-old Stewart Galligan…

Meanwhile in Scottsdale

Video shows suspect ramming Scottsdale police / The driver of an SUV whom police shot Thursday in a Safeway parking lot near Hayden and Chaparral roads twice tried to ram his way out of a trap, based on surveillance video released Friday by the Scottsdale Police Department…. The surveillance video shows at least a half-dozen police vehicles converging on the SUV. Officers exit their vehicles and quickly approach the SUV, which the driver puts in reverse and slams into a police vehicle. Several seconds pass before the SUV pulls forward slightly. The driver then puts the SUV in reverse, and again rams a police vehicle…


Wrong Way driver from May freeway fatalities pleads not guilty

third-wrongwaywreckWrong-way driver Patricia Murphy who caused crash with two fatalities on loop 202 in May 18, 2014 has plead not guilty to all charges including two counts of 2nd degree murder. Police say in June that Murphy “had a blood-alcohol content of 0.18, more than twice the legal limit. A urine test showed Murphy also tested positive for opiates and benzodiazepine” Continue reading Wrong Way driver from May freeway fatalities pleads not guilty

Mesa woman killed in bike lane

unconfirmed/never made the newspapers / news reports, or at least not that I can find by googling!?? What’s become of our traditional news media? Did Mesa police keep this info to themselves?

according to sources on 12/14/2014 Helen Brandes-Weeks 66/F was killed by an apparently inattentive driver who struck her from behind in the bike lane on Ellsworth northbound between Elliot and Guadalupe… near Harvest Community Church [google maps]

Cycling, traffic safety, traffic justice, and legal topics; energy, transit and transportion economics