Your Thursday Daily News Digest

by Mark Zalewski

February 2, 2017

In today’s CyclingTips Daily News Digest: Kittel doubles up at Dubai Tour; Danny van Poppel claims prologue victory at the 2017 Jayco Herald Sun Tour; BMC wins Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana TTT; Démare wins Etoile de Bessèges opener; Vos, van der Poel follow-up Worlds disappointments with wins; Contract secured: Nathan Earle in career-best form and ready to get back on the winners’ list; 30 feet above a very different finish line: Masters racer recounts life-saving recovery after harrowing crash on bridge; Renowned cycling photographer Graham Watson retires; Advocacy group calls 10 day sentence for drunk driver who killed cyclist ‘unacceptable’; Colorado legislature considering adopting ‘Idaho Stop’ law; Video: Highlights from the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Races; Backstage Pass: Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race.

Advocacy group calls 10 day sentence for drunk driver who killed cyclist ‘unacceptable’

by CyclingTips

In response to the 10 day jail sentence given in a plea deal for a drunk driver who struck and killed a cyclist in Chicago in 2013, the local advocacy organization, the Active Transportation Alliance (ATA), has started an online petition calling for leaders to rethink the penalties involved in order to reduce or eliminate future deaths — something the city of Chicago had earlier pledged to do.

“The message the outcome of this case sends is clear: drunk drivers can kill innocent people without fear of being held responsible,” the petition said. “This is unacceptable.”

“We are calling upon Chicago’s law enforcement and judicial leaders to start taking preventable fatalities on our roadways seriously. The City of Chicago has a ‘Vision Zero’ goal to eliminate all traffic fatalities by 2026. Law enforcement and judicial leaders must be active participants in supporting the city’s ‘Vision Zero’ goal. Unfortunately, this lack of accountability among drunk reckless drivers for their actions is all too familiar.”

ATA argues that the lenient sentence for the driver in this case was a result of a possible lack of impartiality by the judge in the case, both in terms of his views on cyclists and the driver’s background. The driver, who comes from a wealthy suburb and from a family that is politically connected, was represented by a high-profile defense attorney.

“Restorative justice is an important part of the message,” said ATA’s Advocacy Director Jim Merrell. “Accountability doesn’t just mean locking people up and throwing away the key. Looking at alternatives to incarceration such as community service, substance abuse treatment, suspension of driving privileges, and driver education.”

Click through to read more at Chicagoist.