Bike assault on Highland and E. Liberty Ave

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juliag
Participant
#

Hi all, just wanted to warn everyone that a couple of kids knocked me off my bike Friday July 2 at around 11 pm. Two of them (probably about age 13-15) were riding on the same bike down Highland, then they turned around and one of them ran up next to me and knocked me down right in front of the seminary on Highland. Not sure what exactly they had in mind, but when they started getting closer I started yelling at them and then they turned around and took off. Chalk up another one for dangerous biking in PGH, alas …


rachel_ding
Participant
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That really, really sucks… I’m sorry that happened to you. Are you OK?


dbacklover
Participant
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did you call the police and file a report


saltm513
Participant
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juliag, so very glad that you are okay, welcome to the board and thank you for posting- it is important to know of these things as they happen in the area. That’s so scary and really disheartening.


quizbot
Participant
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File a report, definitely, and count yourself lucky. There was an attack on a pedestrian in the exact same location about a month ago… some broken bones, but no robbery. These punks are just intent on hurting people FOR FUN. The cops absolutely need to know that this happened, even if you don’t have good descriptions. Zone 5 is taking all cyclist attacks very seriously, so please make a call even though it’s after the fact.

Ride defensively, and use some adrenaline to pedal your ass off if it ever happens again. These juveniles just want to hurt people, so keep that in mind. Just turn on the burners & get the hell out of there. No way they’d ever catch me if they had to turn around & run me down on foot. Sad to say but true – it pays to be prepared for the worst you can imagine around this neck of the woods. Glad you made it out ok… it could have been much much worse.

To the community: that being said, it sounds like the last thing these kids need is a free bike fix up clinic, or cycling community outreach. They’re using bikes to commit attacks… why enable them any further? Sure, you might help out a genuinely sweet & deserving kid every now & then, but some bully is going to work that bike away from him within a day or two, either by force or persuasion. It’s nice to think progressively, but those thoughts have zero bearing in reality.


Christy
Participant
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For ppl who use that area to ride, there is a “shortcut” path that cuts by peabody fields…I feel like there are possibly kids who use it to hide or run or catch people by surprise. Most of you who ride there probably know what I mean, but it’s an entrance/exit I would keep an eye on while riding.

juliag, thanks for posting. Very glad you’re okay. I am encouraged that your fierce response to them was enough to scare them. It just shows what’s underneath the bully is a scared kid.


Noah Mustion
Participant
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Sad to say but I saw the thread title and wasn’t sure if it was a new thread or an older one. This has got to stop…


scott
Keymaster
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Julia, glad you’re ok!

We’ve talked about this many times this year on these forums, but PLEASE call the police and make a report as soon as you can. These kids have been menacing the area and other people walking and riding their bikes and the police need to catch them. We all need to make sure that should anything like this happen to us, we need to get to a safe place as soon as we can and then call the police.


sarah_q
Participant
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I am getting ready to ride through there this a.m. and I am nervous about all of these shenanigans. But it seems like they’ve mostly been during low-traffic times. Has anyone had a problem during the day?


caitlin
Participant
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Glad you are okay and I hope you filed a report! It is very important to let everyone know–including the police–that this is [still] happening.


Noah Mustion
Participant
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sarah_q,

One of the first assaults of the year happened during rush hour – a cyclist was waiting in traffic at ELB & Negley when some kids came up and sucker punched him.


pratt
Participant
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this makes me want to ride over there with a bunch of friends, send one in that looks a little mousey…wait for them to pounce, swoop in and kick the shit out of these hoodlums. Maybe break their legs so they can’t come out for the rest of the summer… Too bad I’d probably go to jail for doing it.


raphael
Participant
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hate to say it, but seriously considering riding u-lock-in-hand next time I head up ELB…


Mick
Participant
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I keep my U-lock dangling from my handlebars when going through East Liberty – or any sketchy area or situation. I’ve never hit anyone with the lock and don’t expect to.

I’ve given a few people a friendly wave with it. No matter what their previous disposition, they’ve always given a friendly response.


sarah_q
Participant
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I carry Halt due to my unnatural fear of turkeys but I can’t imagine using it on kids, even little shits that were coming at me. They’re still someone’s kids. wtf.


ejwme
Participant
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Only once did I ever find myself in a situation where I was being attacked by “children”. I was on foot in a place where street beggars were the majority of all pedestrians, and there weren’t that many cars either.

They were little street beggars (sent out by their parents or the local imams, there’s no way to tell) who thought it was fun to surround the “tourists” and while the sympathetic tourists were handing out candies or pencils, strip them of their bags and anything else they could. I’d seen this same group behave this way not 5 minutes earlier when I was further up the road. I’d just narrowly avoided being abandonned in the desert by a van driver who would have rather had no money than the appropriate fare, was royally pissed off, exhausted, and had barely enough cash to buy dinner and a bus ticket back “home”.

The street urchins didn’t know I spoke their language (could hear them planning), carried a 6″ knife in my bag (with one hand on at all times), and my walking stick was actually a big metal pipe disguised to look like a hippy’s wooden stick. I was in a very bad part of a very poor city at night in West Africa. (Mopti, for those who travel, is not for gentler souls)

It wasn’t pretty. I still needed help from a local man to keep them away from me and my stuff. But I didn’t end up in the open sewer (what happens if they’re disappointed with their take), I didn’t end up beaten, and I didn’t end up robbed. I didn’t stick around to see if they were ok (the local guy was still at them). Once it started, I didn’t see them as children anymore, and that scared me more than anything. They were distinguishable from the Sally Struthers commercial kids only in facial expressions, and I didn’t think of them as human, let alone children.

I don’t ride with a U-lock or any other intentional weapon. I know I would use it, I know how that feels, and it scares me.


unixd0rk
Participant
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“For ppl who use that area to ride, there is a “shortcut” path that cuts by peabody fields…I feel like there are possibly kids who use it to hide or run or catch people by surprise. Most of you who ride there probably know what I mean, but it’s an entrance/exit I would keep an eye on while riding.”

i use that cut every day i feel like attempting a short run up bunnyhop up three stairs onto supreme way. no problems yet…

also, were the kids riding a blue bmx? i think i saw them recently. if i ever see them again, i’ll get their pic or a video, maybe even approach them and ask them if they heard anything about the people getting knocked off of bikes.

it’s pretty sad if i recognize these kids and i’m not even paid to be observant but not a single cop can find them or remembers seeing them riding around.


ErinK
Participant
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“Unnatural fear of turkeys?”

Actually I almost got hit by a descending turkey in my car on Rt. 8 and it was terrifying. Visions of a 30-pound bird coming through my windshield…. I don’t think Halt! would have helped though.

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