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Another Bicyclist Killed In Riverside County

David Mendez, 22, of Riverside was killed by a driver who was allegedly under the influence.

Patch file photo/Michael Loeschnig
Patch file photo/Michael Loeschnig

A bicyclist fatally struck by an alleged drunk driver in Riverside was a local man, the Riverside County coroner said today.

He was David Mendez, 22, of Riverside, according to a statement from the coroner's office.

The crash occurred on Central Avenue east of the Riverside (91) Freeway around 3:45 p.m. Sunday, said Riverside police traffic Sgt. Ben Shafer.

"According to witnesses, a vehicle traveling east on Central Avenue in the far right lane, nearest the curb, struck an adult male bicyclist who was traveling in the same direction near the curb," Shafer said. Members of the Riverside Fire Department and American Medical Response paramedics rendered aid, "but he was ultimately pronounced deceased."

The driver was arrested and alcohol was involved in the crash, said police Lt. Julian Hutzler.

Anyone with information about the crash was asked to call Riverside police Det. Ken Madsen at (951) 826-8723, Shafer said. --City News Service


southernbelle January 06, 2014 at 02:41 PM
This hits very close to home for me. I've lost a loved one from being hit on a bike by a drunk. It's just no match for those on a bike. There are way too many drunk drivers in our area. Recent LOCAL statistics show several recent deaths because of alcohol related incidents. I'm THANKFUL for all the checkpoints that others are so hateful against, but we still need many more solutions. Also, the new law went into affect Jan 1--you must be 3 ft from a cyclist in order to pass. If you aren't allowed that space you have to follow behind until that length is allotted! Share the road!
JJ Mclure January 06, 2014 at 03:54 PM
dui drivers should get life in prison
Willie Lump January 06, 2014 at 04:03 PM
I agree with being tough on DUI drivers. They do not need to ever drive again, even it only ticketed. As far as killing or injuring someone, they need to be sentenced as harshly as possible; upon release they do not need to ever drive again. To be fair and I do not know the full circumstances of the accident, but we know many times in Temecula, Murrieta and elsewhere bicyclists, individually or in groups, violate the most basic of traffic laws? We have watched one or more bicycle riders run stop signs and stop lights, cut from the right-hand bicycle lane into the left turn lane in front of traffic, turn left from the right-hand bicycle lane, fail to signal turns, ride against traffic on narrow two-lane roads; the list goes on, but my point is made. Group riding many times magnifies the violations. What makes this two-wheeled behavior all the more perplexing is the lack of police enforcement, even when they are witness to these infringements.
Brenda January 07, 2014 at 08:07 AM
JJ, and you know I am with you on that. Not the normal 1 to 4 years they get. Or wait, a person who runs a red light killing someone can get off with just her license suspended for a year. A drunk ALWAYS knows before he goes out and drinks, or stays in and drinks that if he gets behind the wheel of a car he could kill someone, including himself, but that doesnt usually happen. In my book it is premeditated because WHO DOES NOT KNOW THAT?? IF everyone knows that drunk drivers kill, then it is not involuntarily. Its all volutary from the minute they decide to drink. I hope there are some extra charges they can throw on this guy for him to get more time, otherwise he is probably already bailed out on his 5k bond, and sitting back drinking a beer now. Our laws do nothing with Drunk Drivers. Even not hitting someone, just the charges, and sentence for DUI is diddly squat for what it should be and why is that? Because the lawmakers know that far too many important people and their kids get caught Driving and driving. I hate to be political but seriously what other reason would there be for a fine and walk away? Rip young man, and guy driving.............. I am so sorry SouthernBelle to hear your story and also glad you shared the new law of the road and bycylists.
Zak January 07, 2014 at 12:34 PM
Willie Lump, By all accounts David Mendez was following all the rules of the road. You know who wasn't following the rules of the road? The person who was drinking and driving. Far too often I see comments lumping all cyclists into one scofflaw group. Why do we not do the same for motorists?

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