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Another Cyclist Attacked in Oakland

The passenger "...leaned out a window to intentionally smack me in the head."

3:56 PM PDT on June 8, 2023

A still from Colburn’s bike camera of the car passing with the assault suspect with his arm and head still partially outside the window of the car

A passing car’s passenger assaulted cyclist David Colburn on Wednesday while he was riding his bike on San Pablo in Oakland. The passenger “…leaned out a window to intentionally smack me in the head.”

Colburn Tweeted about and posted video of the incident:

Colburn confirmed via phone that he’s physically okay and that he didn’t fall off the bike. “It did knock my glasses off,” he said, adding that he just wants to see better bike infrastructure to help keep cyclists safe. 

The pattern follows that of a series of attacks last February. Those attacks, which targeted some 14 East Bay cyclists, were reported by KTVU. A spokesperson for the Oakland police told Streetsblog of the earlier attacks that “there are no new updates and the identity of the driver is still unknown. Also no arrests have been made at this time.”

Robert Prinz of Bike East Bay told Streetsblog his organization’s been in touch with Colburn and that they provided links and resources. Additionally, “Both Oakland and Berkeley have vulnerable road user anti-harassment ordinances which allow for a civil suit with a minimum $1,000 award plus legal fees, which can be an option even without police follow up,” wrote Prinz in an email to Streetsblog.

Of course, without police follow up, Colburn also won’t have the opportunity to identify his attackers in order to file such a suit.

“I am disappointed but not surprised drivers are taking unjustified rage out on cyclists,” wrote Lizzie Siegel, a Bike Party organizer who was targeted in the February attacks, in an email to Streetsblog about this latest incident. “Though progress in safer streets and safer bike infrastructure has been made, we have a long way to go. I hope drivers remember we are all humans trying to get where we need to go.”

Streetsblog has also reached out to Councilmember Carroll Fife for comment. “That was outrageous and unconscionable,” she said in an interview last March with Streetsblog about the previous attacks on cyclists. “Those people need to be charged. They have no regard for human life. But I’m also hoping we can deter this kind of behavior with design.”

Colburn has filed a police report. He wrote more details about the incident in a Mastodon post.

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