Cyclists outraged by slap on the wrist for motorist who knocked down cyclist

10 June 2015 - 08:41 By PHILANI NOMBEMBE


The cycling community in Cape Town is outraged by a slap on the wrist for a motorist who knocked down a cyclist then fled. Alriza Reid still carries facial scars after being knocked off her bicycle by a BMW driver.Remarkably, she bears no grudge against the man whose actions could have taken her life.Reid, a mathematics teacher, was cycling in LIandudno in September when Raymond Evans ploughed into her then drove over her as he raced away.But Evans will not spend a day in jail after he entered into a plea and sentencing agreement this week.He pleaded guilty to charges of reckless driving, failing to immediately stop his vehicle after the accident and failing to help an injured person. Evans also apologised to Reid.Wynberg Magistrate's Court sentenced him on Monday to 12 months in jail wholly suspended for five years.His driver's licence was suspended for three months and he was ordered to make a R10,000 donation to the Chaeli Campaign, an NGO working with disabled children, which was chosen by Reid.Reid sustained injuries to her leg and has been unable to cycle since the accident.She only teaches half days as she continues to recover and said although the accident had changed her life considerably, she was happy with the sentence."I am quite relieved that I did not have to testify in court, but I am also happy with the plea bargain," she said. "I didn't necessarily want to send a message. I wanted justice and I feel that he is paying for it in a just way."I suffered a couple of fractures but they were mostly to my face, and obviously my rehabilitation is most important to me now."Andrew Wheeldon, an independent cycling consultant, said Evans's sentence was "appallingly insufficient". Motorists needed to get the message that "you serve an effective jail term" if they knocked over a cyclist.

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