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07/06/2011

Tougher Penalties For Motorists Who Hit Bikers

By Jim Pinto, New Windsor, NY

You carried the story about the Last Chance bikers who were killed in the head-on collision this past Friday. Bike accident news spreads fast in this biker world. My friend is in a similar sober club who heard about this accident and contacted those he knew to solicit support. biking is a sport, a hobby, a mode of transport, and a sub-culture made up of a wide range of personalities and walks of life. So we all tend to feel a bond and kinship.

The articles I've read say that charges are likely, towards the driver of the pick-up truck, and that he was probably DUI or DWI. A bad scene.  And worse that the victims were decidedly sober.

The irony is that at this time, at time place, on a curve in the road, a vehicle driver under the influence of alcohol on this curve crossed over the center line and crashed head on into a group of bikers.What are the chances?  What are the odds? Enough is enough. We hear too often that the vehicle driver does not see the motorcycle rider they cut off, they hit, they run into. We hear it often and there's really no outcry.

Enough is enough. We hear too often that the vehicle drivers are drunk, or are on the cell, or texting, or otherwise pre-occupied - multi-tasking, and then injuring or killing bikers.
And now this: Sober bikers on their way to the wake of another sober friend who passed away, are enroute to this sober wake, are killed by a drunk driver.

We have fairly tough laws in affect, but they don't stop those who disregard them and take that chance, and drive anyway.  We need the public to hear and know, loud and clear, that Enough is Enough!  Many of these vehicle/bike accidents don't get enough exposure.

Many of those who caused the accident don't get charged with criminal charges. Instead they incur traffic violation charges (failure to yield for one). How about Careless and indifferent assault? That'd fit more aptly. So in this case, this driver took that chance, and literally dissolved THE Last Chance for two fellow bikers.

Comments

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Greetings
As you may know 2 bikers from a ny chapter of LCMC were killed , and 4 more were injured by a drunk driver.
I believe the surrounding situation represents a clear and present danger to the motorcycling community as a whole.
What you may not know is the driver,John P Heaney III, was a NJ cop. He was not arrested at the scene. the officer has the authority to immediately place the individual under arrest for DUI in PA, and usually does. an arrest is commonplace, not to do so implies favoritism.
The DA, John M. Morganelli, has stated charges may be filed after the weekend. He has not filed charges at this time.
The underlying message seems to be that drunk cops can run over and kill all the bikers they want, and hide behind the blue wall. This is despicable.
Law enforcement officers are given education, knowledge, and training. This is entrusted for the sake of protecting the public, not for personal gain, and not for giving the inside info to be used as a perpetual get out of jail free card.
For our own safety, dignity and justice, justice must be served, and this man must be charged and convicted of, at the least two counts of vehicular homicide via DWI.

the law allows:Anyone alleged to have caused the death of another person while DUI can be charged with homicide by vehicle while driving under the influence - a second-degree felony. If more than one person died, the district attorney can bring a separate count of homicide while under the influence for each death.
Homicide by vehicle while driving under the influence in a Pennsylvania DUI case is punishable by a minimum of three years in prison. The judge has the option of imposing a sentence of three to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $25,000 for each count of homicide by vehicle while driving under the influence.

I suggest as many people as possible contact the DA and demand justice.
Here is his info:
John M. Morganelli
Northampton County Courthouse
669 Washington St
Easton PA 18042-7492
Phone: (610) 559-3020


And this, I believe, is the driver:
John P Heaney
MALE - LATE 40'S
Address: 18 Jade Ln Phone: (908) 310-4832 Location: Phillipsburg, NJ 08865
MarriedHouse$320k
Caucasian
AquariusRepublicanCatholic
College Degree
Technical
So be careful when riding in his area.

Also here is a link to the article:
http://www.lehighvalleylive.com/slate-belt/index.ssf/2011/07/bangor_police_identify_driver.html#incart_mrt
The article is below.
Please forward to any and all appropriate parties.

I would consider this a case to case basis. There are times when cyclers are reckless enough to go out of the bicycle lane and incur accident. Hence, not the motorists fault.

But there might be a direct impact brought by the motorists. These cases can be settled in court.

i pay a fee for my car to be on the road what are the bikes paying ? if they use the road they should be licensed.

2 bikers from were killed , and 4 more were injured by a drunk driver it is a really bad situation, drunk cops can run over and kill all the bikers they want, and hide behind the blue wall. This is despicable. We hear too often that the vehicle drivers are drunk, or are on the cell, or texting. Drink and drive also using cell phone while driving is illegal.

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