Thursday, June 04, 2009

Bicyclist Assaulted on the Schuylkill River Trail in Norristown

On Wednesday evening a female bicyclist was sucker punched as she passed by a gang of 6-7 men in black jeans and red shirts hanging out near the trail. She didn't have enough time to turn around so instead she just hammered past them but was punched in the face.

Amazingly she didn't fall off her bike and was able to get away. According to police there has been an increase in gang activity in the area and that may (or may not)explain the red shirts. We had another report earlier in the day of 4 men in red shirts but that cyclist reported other people around.

This location (Schuylkill River Trail at Haws Avenue) has had isolated cyclist harassment problems in the past in the late spring and summer although there have been no serious injuries to date. The county has responded by clearing brush to prevent bad guys from hiding in the shrubbery.

We recommend that you should not travel alone in the vicinity of Haws Avenue in the late afternoon or evening. If you are alone carry your cell phone and wait for other bicyclists before proceeding. If you see trouble get yourself to a safe place and call police and render aid if you need to.

Members of the Bicycle Coalition's Montgomery County Committee are talking to the Norristown Police about this incident. The location is less than a mile west of the Norristown Transportation Center you should see signs as the Norristown Farm Park Connector Route which begins at Haws Avenue.


View Philadelphia Bike Map Wiki in a larger map

18 comments:

Erik said...

It makes my blood boil to hear stories like this. These losers hang out in packs because they are cowards. I hope the perps are run down like the dogs they are.

Anonymous said...

On twitter... http://twitter.com/phillybikeclub/status/2033341343

Anonymous said...

The township should replace the basketball courts with kiddie recreational equipment -- rocking horses, baby swings, picnic tables. The thugs would leave the area and families with babies nearby would enhance safety. Outdoor basketball courts attract gangs and thuggery.

Wee said...

I was on the bike lane on 12th street between Girard and Spring Garden. When I rode past a bunch of kids. One of them steps into my lane and sucker punched me in the face. This happened on May 29th

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

It’s sad to have an incident like this happen to a cyclist who just wants to enjoy a ride on the SRT. We all need to step it up and not tolerate such violence. Please show your support and participate in the “Stop the Violence” this Wednesday night on the SRT at Haws Ave.

Anonymous said...

This story is woefully inaccurate. There have not been "isolated" incidents. This problem is chronic. It happens almost every day - hooligans and thugs throwing things at cyclists, pushing them off their bikes. I was attacked at the Norristown Transportation Center a couple of years ago, and the Norristown Police REFUSED to even take a report about it - trying to cover up how bad the crime actually is there. The police don't care about the trail. They'll tell you it's a County problem. The County will tell you it's a Norristown problem. Just a bunch of finger pointing.

E(vil) said...
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Derek said...
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Anonymous said...
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John said...
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beedabike said...
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Bill W. said...
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John said...

Comments concerning guns on the trail or containing racist remarks will be deleted.

Montgomery County Park Rules - http://parks.montcopa.org/parks/cwp/view,a,1441,q,39824.asp

A Frequent SRT User said...

As somber as this news is, we need to put it in perspective. In Fairmount Park, this has happened. On the Perkiomen Trail, this has happened. Has that stopped people from going to those places for recreation? We cannot and WILL NOT let a small group of riffraff stop us from enjoying the trail. If it took six or seven of them to knock down one female, that tells you how tough they are--seriously.

My suggestion to stop the nonsense: Erect a 10-foot barb-wired fence along that section of the trail to squelch unauthorized access.

T said...

The Haws section isn't all that needs to be cleaned up - so does the attitude of overly aggressive cyclists. The trail is a recreational trail, not a training path for road cycling enthusiasts. I am a cyclist and a runner who frequents the trail on a daily basis. I've had more problems with overly agrressive, fast moving and arrogant cyclists who think they have the right of way on the trail. I've been yelled at, almost hit and almost assulted by bikers who think the trail is primarily for their use. Slow down and give plenty of room when approaching pedestrians, joggers, dog walkers, bladers and families/children on bikes. They have as much a right to the trail as you. And slower moving bodies ALWAYS have the right of way. Stop the insanity of yelling at other slower moving people becasue they get in your way of reaching your goal time or average speed. And again, give ample room when passing.

Anonymous said...

The SRT is a multi use trail. Cyclists, joggers, dog walkers, bladers, family groups are all entitled to use the trail and should be respectful and courteous of others doing the same. This goes for everyone T - not just cyclists. You can do your part by staying to the right, being attentive, and yielding when you hear an overtaking cyclist call out "on your left" or "passing left", etc. Tolerance and respect go a long way T, it is not up to you to decide how the trail should be used.

James said...

There is nothing wrong with the <a href="http://www.squidoo.com/basketball-training-drills>basketball</a> courts at Haws. The place just needs a little bit more attention by the authorities.