In San Francisco Superior Court at the hall of justice, a 23 year old bicyclist entered a plea of guilty on Monday to a misdemeanor violation of vehicular manslaughter. The cyclist was accused of running a red light and striking and killing a pedestrian along the Embarcadero at San Francisco’s waterfront.
The defendant, Randolph Ang, was sentenced by a San Francisco Superior Court Judge to three years’ probation and 500 hours of community service as part of a plea bargain made with the SF district attorney’s office. This plea bargain was agreed to by the family of the woman he struck and killed. In addition, Ang was also ordered to pay the family $15,375 in restitution costs.
The facts of the incident were that Ang was riding north on the Embarcadero on the San Francisco waterfront at around 8:30 in the morning on July 15 when he hit Cherney, a 68 year old woman, who was crossing Mission Street with her husband. Cherney was visiting from Washington, D.C. and was pronounced dead at the hospital due to head injuries at a San Francisco hospital Aug. 11.
Mrs. Cherney’s husband, Colburn Cherney, gave a statement in criminal court through district attorney Sarah Hawkins, describing his wife as a fearless mother and grandmother with an incredible zest for life. The District Attorney read a statement from Mr. Cherney stating: “We had 20 wonderful years of marriage, but we expected and deserved 20 more years,” as Mr. Cherney wept quietly next to her. “My life is ruined. I will never be the same. To this day, not a half hour goes by that I don’t think of her.”
The Defendant, Ang, had uncontrollable shaking hands before the hearing began. The defendant apologized to the family as the statement was read. “I will forever be in debt to Mr. Cherney and his family,” he said. “This is something I will never forget and will weigh on my conscience forever.” He added, “I cannot ask for their forgiveness, but I hope they can hear and feel how sorry I am.”
This plea agreement was reached after the DA spoke to the victim’s family. The family agreed that they did not want the defendant to spend a year in county jail. The further explained that the jail time will not bring their family member back.
How do you feel about this plea agreement? I think it is great that the court is ordering her to do so many community service hours. I hope that she can use these hours to help educate cyclists in San Francisco that they have the same laws as vehicles. I have seen far too many cyclists breaking law after law and getting away with it. I get so frustrated when I drive and the bicycles swerve in front of you and run lights. I also hate critical mass but I am not a cyclist and I am sure my belief would be different if I were.
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