Monday, October 26, 2009

Andre Steed Dies-Reward For Hit and Run Bicyclist Offered

Pedestrian Andre Steed passed away Saturday morning as a result of the injuries sustained in the hit and run with a bicyclist on October 15th.

Andre was a Paralegal for the law firm of Caesar, Rivise, Bernstein, Cohen & Pokotilow, Ltd. They are offering a reward of $10,000 for information that leads to the identification, arrest and conviction of the individual that struck and killed Andre. Further information regarding the reward will be available via the Citizens Crime Commission of Philadelphia (215-546-TIPS;

The cyclist has been described by witnesses as a white male, about 5'9" tall, 140 pounds, in his late teens or early twenties, wearing a white hoodie with red spots in the background and riding a white mountain bike.

Thanks to Sal Guerriero and Pete LaVerghetta for providing updates to this story.


Anonymous said...

my condolences to the fallen. Surely the bicycle community will be skewered by this one.

Anonymous said...

The bicycle community can avoid being "skewered" by this if someone in the community turns this killer over to the police. I'm close to the firm, and I understand that at least one local shop angrily refused to cooperate when one of the lawyers asked for help. People like that deserve to be "skewered."

Anonymous said...

First, I want it to be known that I'm appalled by the loss of Mr. Steed's life. I'm horrified by the actions of this cyclist and for the public relations ramifications this may have for the Philadelphia bicycle movement.

It should be noted however, that the law firm offering the award was the one that the victim worked for.

I was a little put off when I first read this blog post, thinking initially that the law firm came out of the blue to try to seek some sort of potential civil action against the cyclist on behalf of Mr. Steed and his next of kin. Falsely believing this initially, I was a bit angry, thinking that this firm was grandstanding to call the the public's attention "the plague of anarchist cyclists," or something akin to that.

I think some clarification in this blog post is warranted to ward off any future misunderstanding.

Nick said...

Too many close calls between bicyclists and pedestrians happen all over Center City. It is the rare biker who actually stops at an intersection, be it stop sign or red light controlled. It is more than a few bikers who ride on sidewalks in Center City. Leaving the Kimmel Center Thursday Night on Spruce Street was irritating when a concert going bicyclist unlocked her bike and rather than walk her bike to the bike lane and actually use it she just rode down the sidewalk weaving around people in what was a full sidewalk! The Bicycle Coalition should favor clarity over civility and go beyond saying these behaviors are more than not recommended but are just plain unacceptable and illegal.

patrick said...

I am very saddened by Mr Steed's death, but I'm puzzled and irritated by a few things in articles related to this story.

First, witnesses reported a crashing sound, followed by seeing both men on the ground. Then, "the witnesses told firm employees and later police that the bicyclist straightened his handle bars that were contorted by the collision and fled the scene as Steed lay bleeding in the street."

I've been a lucky cyclist, so perhaps someone with crash experience can help me understand, but this doesn't make sense to me; if someone is struck by a bike with enough force to knock him on the ground, striking his head with enough force to kill, that doesn't seem like a crash that a biker can ride away from. And if his handlebars are "contorted", he's probably not easily fixing them and riding away either.

No question that the biker should have stayed on the scene if he was involved, but he's being vilified on witness reports that only came after the fact, as a result of fliers. I'm absolutely not prejudging the situation, saying that Steed was at fault in this tragic accident, but there is a possibility that the biker was following traffic laws; i.e., jaywalking is not unheard of.

It seems like people are using this tragic situation to air grievances with all poorly-behaved bikers. I'm not saying we should treat this accident as an isolated incident, but I can just sense that the non-biking public is going to lump us all in together as a menace as a result of this.

I think enforcement of bikers following traffic laws would be a positive step, but then, so would handing out tickets for jaywalking. In my experience, pedestrians are more likely to cross an intersection on a red light when a biker is coming the opposite direction, where they would otherwise stop for a car. When I bike across 34th on Walnut (on a green light), people start crossing as soon as there are no cars coming, while I have to weave between walkers. Philadelphia police officers acting as crossing guards completely ignore the situation.

Anonymous said...

This is right by my house. There is a common disregard for all traffic laws by the majority of bicyclists in my area (not to be outdone, there appears to be a commond disregard for traffic laws by the mv drivers as well). I have no problem with sharing the road with a bicyclist when I am driving. What I do have a problem with is that when I am driving, I have to worry about people who come out of the blue when I have the right of way, or ride through stop signs or red lights when I am crossing the street. It is dangerous. It is not ok to make the excuse that anybody who points this out is just a hater of bicyclists or is lumping everybody in the same category- you might remember, I pointed out that many drivers are equally as reckless. Please share the road, please obey the traffic laws, please remember there are other people who will be affected by your decisions.

Anonymous said...

Patrick, to clarify, the cyclist was not obeying traffic laws. He was seen riding against traffic on 16th Street. We don't know where Andre was walking, we just know that the cyclist told a person who came to help that he was trying to avoid being hit by a car, then he stood up, asked if he looked injured, adjusted his handlebars and did the immoral thing of riding away.

Anonymous said...

Ever more reason for more bicycle lanes and motorist education!