Police: Cyclist Accident was Hit and Run After All

by Katie Pyzyk September 6, 2012 at 3:45 pm 6,343 40 Comments

Police are releasing more details about an accident involving a bicyclist near Westover last Tuesday (August 28). Although details were sketchy at the time, they now consider it a hit and run.

At the time, police believed the cyclist may have had a medical emergency and fallen off the bike. That was based on a report from a person who claimed to have seen a cyclist experiencing what appeared to be a seizure, then falling to the ground.

According to Arlington County Police spokesman Dustin Sternbeck, the police investigation into the incident indicates the report of a medical emergency is inconsistent with what responders observed at the scene. Sternbeck says based on damage to the bicycle and emergency crews finding an unconscious victim bleeding from the head, the incident is now deemed a hit and run.

The driver left, no obvious evidence was uncovered at the scene and there were no witnesses who stayed to speak with police, so there is no suspect or vehicle description available.

Anyone who may have information about the accident is asked to call the ACPD non-emergency number at 703-558-2222.

  • CH

    What’s most upsetting is that the cyclist doesn’t remember what happened — I’m hoping that’s not indicative of very serious injury. I wish him/her well.

    • SomeGuy

      I find it more upsetting that the driver fled the scene, assuming that’s what actually happened.

    • Greg

      It means he at least had a serious concussion or that he did have a medical emergency which contributed to his getting hit.

    • drax

      No helmet?

  • Justin

    I thought Arlington was such a cycle friendly city!!!!

    • happycyclist

      relative to a lot of other places, yeah.

      even in arlington not all is sweetness and light

      • malaka

        The city is….the drivers are not

        • Georgethecat

          All dessert no vegetables!

  • Regis

    Isn’t this where the Metrobus crosses PH? That’s where I would look first.

    • Clarendon biker

      The Metro/ART buses are terribly. Don’t yield, pull halfass into the bus lanes and block the bike lane, and will routinely tailgate or pull out in front of bikes in the bike lanes. It’s really sad. I came so close to getting hit once that I wrote the number down and reported it. No response whatsoever (ART bus too)

  • NoVA RN

    1. It took them a week to figure this out?

    2. Any word on the cyclist’s condition?

    • Arlington, Northside

      No, it took them a week to write a press release

  • bobco85

    How is the cyclist doing? Any updates on him?

    • daniel


  • Bon Air

    They had a crack team of detectives working around the clock on this one! Great news, they figured out it was a hit and run! Brilliant

  • Lost in Arlington

    Wouldn’t this report be more helpful if an approximate time of the incident was given?

    • nom de guerre

      Arlington sent out a traffic alert email @ 3:13 pm on 8/28/12 regarding this incident so I would guess it happened a little before that.

  • veeta

    this is fishy. No witnesses–but a “report” of someone seeing a cyclist having a seizure.

  • Crack Accident Team

    Didn’t the “crack accident team” here on Arlnow figure that out long ago….something about the bent wheel being the smoking gun ??

    • D. Tracy

      Yep…about a dozen responders figured that out from a low-rez thumbnail.

      • malaka

        that and the shoes being about 15 feet away

  • D. Tracy

    Hmmmm…I’d say suspect number 1 is the “seizure” reporter.

    • Having fun yet

      The person who saw and reported a “medical emergency” must have also seen the mangled bike, as everyone who read the article also saw it. And the shoe. And a bloody head wound.

      The question is, why didn’t they tell the police they saw the aftermath of a hit and run, when that is what it so obviously was?

      Where there’s smoke.

  • Bean Pole

    The meladrama is so Arlington.

    • Having fun yet

      Wow. Where to start…I don’t think you know what melodrama means. I know you can’t spell it.

      • drax

        meladrama (noun) – expressions of emotion after a diagnosis of skin cancer

  • JnA

    Is is possible that the bicyclist rear-ended a large truck moving slowly and the driver was unaware that an accident had occurred?

    • Arlingtonian

      Not likely. The bike had a badly bent front wheel. A moving bike does not have enough force to cause this amount of damage by itself. It looks like something ran over the wheel, either during or after the incident.

      • cyclist

        Actually, a moving bike could easily generate enough force to bend its own wheel after hitting something.

  • NotLanceArmstrong

    This piece would be a lot more informative if the reporter let us know the central fact that is missing here: what about the cyclist? Is he or she dead? In a coma? Suffering amnesia. Unable to speak, write or sign? Snatched by aliens after the crash? No reference to why the cyclist can’t just tell us what happened is forgetting the “who” in the who/what/where/when journalism 101 approach to writing. How about an update?

    • Police declined to give any information about the condition of the cyclist, except to say that this was not a fatal accident.

      • NotLanceArmstrong

        Thanks for the update (shoulda’ been in the piece).

  • Kathy41

    Still wish the County would make the homeowner on the northeast corner with the weeping willow cut the branches to improve visibility at that intersection. It’s called encroachment.

    • CW

      Would love to start a list of similar intersections. Offender number one being the bushes at the Key Bridge Marriott. One of the busiest cyclist and pedestrian intersections around and its a completely blind corner.

    • YTK

      BYOS – Bring Your Own Shears

  • GodFila

    Did they determine whose fault it was?

    Dang no upside down question mark on this keyboard

  • Ted

    You sure can badly bend a front wheel, if it’s alloy and/or racing equipment and you are going fast enough when you hit something.

    • nom de guerre

      The picture clearly reveals that the front wheel was a lightweight alloy, either Collapsium or Unobtanium. Both are known to “taco” under routine tensioning or striking a loose piece of gravel.

      • Mike

        Person on a bicycle hit a vehicle, maybe after running s stop sign.

  • Ted

    How about – Bicyclist hits vehicle through no fault of vehicle’s driver (running stop sign). Driver just takes off. “Wasn’t my fault”.


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