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"Out for a bike ride." So, I guess the Post is implying that he was engaging in a purely recreational activity. And if true, i suppose we're to then conclude that he deserved to die. Because a non-speeding college student, for reasons unknown, did not see a grown man on a bicycle on a straight road in daylight.

the cyclist killed this morning was my neighbor. the road he was struck on has a shoulder, albeit a very very narrow one. Cyclists dont have much room at all to travel only in the shoulder, therefore they are obviously going to be out in the main road a little. Police claim that the cyclist being in the middle of the road was a contributing factor, however the driver claims she hit him because she didnt see him. How do you not see someone in broad daylight, thats supposedly in the middle of the road? Negligence. Praying for his family.

Standard accident investigation these days should ascertain if there were any cell phones and were they in use at the time of the accident.

This was my father that was killed and I have a hard time believing a SOBER and NOT distracted person (e.g. texter or on the phone) could hit someone in broad daylight if she was not speeding.

Sorry for your loss.

I can understand accidents someone is riding at night without lights and wearing dark clothes. I can also understand when someone is riding into blinding sun and its hard to see. However, the cyclist was riding at 8am (1hr after sunrise) heading West. What excuse is there for not seeing him? If you "didnt see him" you shouldnt be driving.

they would know, I'm so sorry for your loss. A terrible thing happened to your family today.

check her phone activity....
check her blood alcohol level...
and give her an IQ test

did they mention speed

there needs to be a police understanding of SPEEDING and EXCESSIVE SPEED
and that if the SPEED LIMIT were the speed that this person was traveling that this accident may have never happened

the police... the judges... the authors of these articles... they are all car minded

in their mind
the cyclist did something to deserve this
rather than seeing that there were a number of factors on the drivers side that caused this

Aw man, this breaks my heart. I ride as close to the shoulder as I can manage, This means more bumps, stones, potholes, and glass. But if I have to take a dive, it's into the ditch, not the grave.

Cell phone abuse is also likely. Face it, it's as bad as drinking. Our society is in denial.

Distracted Driver.
or excessive speed.

what other explanation could there be?

The answer is: None.

But I am definitely waiting for more explanation from the driver. Oh wait, "I did not see him" is sufficient. We can all believe that.

Go home, have some sleep and don't worry about any legal consequences...

Small comfort now, but the police should be informed that the state requirement to ride on a shoulder might not apply to shoulders narrower than 4ft--and very likely does not apply to shoulders narrower than 3 ft. If anyone can measure the width there please do so. Others from around the state are ready to help but can not all get to that location soon enough

The only time I haven't seen a cyclist is when he was hugging a shoulder.

How can you just "not see" a cyclist that has taken the lane?

If she didn't see him how does she know where he was riding?


We can't assume that the driver is the source of the information that the rider was not on the shoulder. This may be information gathered from witnesses or the reconstruction of the accident.

This is a horrible thing and my feelings go out to the family, but I think that we should be cautious until we have all of the available facts. You're assumed innocent until guilty in this country, *even* if you hit a cyclist.

Correction: You're assumed innocent and usually never found guilty in this country, *especially* if you hit a cyclist.

no there is no lopol for that road i live down carks landing and it is not torn up it is in perfect shape my mom rides her bike to work on the shoulder right there

I guess he was wearing a helmet. Otherwise it probably would have been cited as further evidence of his culpability.

She said she was going the speed limit. And who would expect her to say otherwise? And of course he's not around to give his version.

I wonder if the vehicle has a black box? Don't some of the most recent models have this? If so - might it have recorded the speed?

I heard this on the radio and the coverage implied it was the cyclist's fault for being on the road. My impression is that the cyclist is considered by the police to be a second class citizen for riding. So much for green technologies. I guess they have to be motorized to be considered appropriate transportation.

I now believe that the statement by the police department demonstrated incomplete familiarity with state law. Cyclists are not required to ride in the shoulder
"(iii) When reasonably necessary to leave the bike lane or shoulder to avoid debris or other hazardous condition; 21-1205.1(b)(1)(iii)." A reliable source tells me this:
At the point of impact the "shoulder" is 4 ft wide but 20 ft prior to that
point there is a mailbox jutting out about 1 ft into the "shoulder" space
and about 40 ft prior there is a tree limb sticking out about 2 ft into the
"shoulder" space."

This does not prove what happened, but it would prove that the initial police report suggested that the police do not know the law. It would have been far better for the police to have said that the cyclist was in the main roadway at a location where riding in the shoulder is unsafe and not required by law.

I hope someone reading this who lives in St. Mary's county will ensure that these misstatements by the police do not reflect the actual mindset of the investigation. Feel free to call me at 301-464-5423 during evenings if that basis of what I am saying is unclear.

In fairness, we have the reporter's interpretation of what the police said, so it may be the reporter who has the facts wrong.

And while it's true that one is presumed innocent, at some point the burden can shift to the accused. For example if someone is known to have shot someone else, they then have to make the case that it was a hunting accident, justifiable etc... In this case the driver admits to hitting the cyclist and admits to not seeing him. I don't know if that's enough to shift burden, but it certainly chips into one's presumption.

Jim T, you can correct the mistatements by writing to the Saint Mary's County Sheriff's Office at sheriff@co.saint-marys.md.us and the Saint Mary's County Department of Public Safety at David.Zylak@co.saint-marys.md.us.

My understanding of cars "black box" is that speed is only recorded when the air bags inflate. But I have also heard that this is not always the case.

FWIW speed of impact can be approximated by other means. The speed of the cyclist can be found by what gear they were in and the amount of denting of the car shows the amount of force.

I will also note that state cycling advocates are discussing this crash and our heart and prayers go out to the family on this tragic and senseless death.

Wanted to share the most recent story update with others. I am absolutely disgusted with the entire article to be frank. In particular, State Police Cpl. Pecks statement,
"He was an avid bicyclist," Peck said. "He had a valid [driver's] license. He chose to ride his bike."
As if to say that he chose to die by riding his bike on a beautiful, cool fall morning vs. driving his vehicle. Just makes me angry.

I would also like to note that I live off of Clarkes Landing Rd (neighbors of the victim) where the accident took place. The shoulder on this road is extremely narrow. Its nearly impossible to stay only in the shoulder all the time. You can see this in the picture on the link I have provided.

Lastly, I would like to point out that in the picture, most of the damage was done to the roof and upper windshield not the front of the vehicle or hood. this would lead me to believe she was going a little faster than 30 mph. Also, most of the damage appears to be to the right side of the vehicle which would lead you to believe he was nearer the shoulder than "the middle of the road" as the driver claimed. My husband and I passed this tragic scene shortly after it happened and there sat the girls car, stopped wayyy past the victim. It obviously took her awhile to stop after she struck him.

It would seem to me that this girl is going to get off scott free. Im completely disappointed in the entire investigation. This man was a responsible family man and never once have I seen him riding his bike anywhere but the shoulder.

I am a distant relative and cyclist. I just spoke with my fam that lives on that road. They ask that they not be contacted concerning this. I ride all over the country at least a 100 mils per week and I can't believe the MD shoulder law. I guess I need to brush up on each states law since I'll be riding in Tx, La, and Ms for sure this week. And, I am a heavy haul trucker that KNOWS the rules of the road whether Driving, Cycling, motorcycling, or running! We all know what crappy shoulders are like. Who wants to change flats all day because they are not maintained? I was hit in Ga 5 years ago and cited for traveling the wrong direction, like most are taught as kids to see the "dangers" coming toward you. I thought I've been doing it "right" until I read the "MD shoulder law" posted here.


Another Maryland Bicyclist Fatality
Sunday, October 11 2009 @ 02:13 AM EDT

Contributed by: The human car

Views: 23

[Email letter from the state police in response to emails, etc sent from various sources.]

Date: Thursday, October 8, 2009, 4:19 PM

To Whom It May Concern:

This is in response to a number of e-mails and citizen inquiries following the death of Curtis A. Leymeister, who was killed while operating a bicycle on Clarks Landing Road on October 5, 2009. I would like to provide the following information to clarify many misconceptions about this tragedy.

First and foremost, please let me convey my deepest sympathies to the entire Leymeister family regarding this tragic loss. As the commander of the Leonardtown Barrack, I spent nearly four hours on the scene of this collision personally notifying the family of the loss of Curtis and making sure all the evidence was being collected to complete a thorough and objective investigation. The Maryland State Police has a long standing history of conducting strict traffic enforcement with the highest hopes of reducing the number of fatal and serious motor vehicle collisions that occur throughout Maryland . The members of my command take this responsibility very seriously and are certainly personally affected whenever they are on the scene of a fatal collision.

The initial investigation would reveal that Mr. Leymeister was struck while he was traveling westbound on Clarks Landing Road, east of Scotch Neck Road, Hollywood, St. Mary’s County, MD. Clarks Landing Road is a single lane road with a posted 40 mph speed limit. On the westbound portion of Clarks Landing Road where the collision occurred, there is an improved shoulder that is 3 feet 4 inches wide at the point of impact. Mr. Leymeister’s bicycle was 4 feet 8 inches left of the white edge line in a lane of travel that is 9 feet 7 inches wide. This places Mr. Leymeister’s bicycle a full 8 feet from the right edge of the pavement when he was struck. It would therefore be inappropriate for a bicycle to commute/travel that far into a designated lane of travel and certainly be classified as one of the primary causes of this collision.

Department of Maryland State Police policy calls for a “Detailed Crash Investigation Report” to be completed following most fatal collisions. This report will encompass many of the items you have mentioned to include detailed diagrams of the scene, photographs, driver statements, toxicology reports, cell phone records of the vehicle operator and a detailed account of any contributing factors to this accident. Unfortunately a press release cannot contain answers to all of the questions that have been posed. Once the entire investigative packet has been completed, it is reviewed and approved by the Maryland State Police Department Reconstruction Coordinator. Subsequently, the case will be presented to the St. Mary’s County States Attorney to determine if charges should be filed.

In regards to the bicycle being struck 4 feet 8 inches left of the edge line, the Maryland Vehicle Law Annotated Code states the following: Title 21-1205(a) Riding on roadways or highway, each person riding a bicycle or a motor scooter at a speed less than the speed of traffic at the time and place and under the conditions then existing on a roadway shall ride as near to the right side of the roadway as practicable and safe. Except when making a left turn, operating on a one-way street, passing a stopped or slower moving vehicle, avoiding pedestrians or road hazards, the right turn lane is a right turn only lane or operating in a lane that is too narrow for a bicycle or motor scooter and another vehicle to travel safely side by side within the lane. At this point in the investigation, there is no apparent reason why Mr. Leymeister would be that far left of the white edge line.

Mr. Leymeister was not wearing a helmet at the time of this accident. Could the helmet have lessoned his injury to the point he would not succumbed to his injuries? The autopsy report may shed some light on this question. It should also be noted that Mr. Leymeister was not wearing any reflective clothing at the time of this collision.

This tragic incident further illustrates the need to educate the public on traffic safety. The Maryland State Police extends their support to those in the bicycling community and continues to be involved in discussions that target the concerns of everyone.

I hope this letter clears up any confusion on the unfortunate events that led to this tragic accident. The Maryland State Police are committed to all citizens of the State of Maryland in keeping our roadways safe for all of us.


Lieutenant Michael Thompson
Commander, Barrack "T" Leonardtown
23200 Leonard Hall Drive
Leonardtown , MD 20650

This is a SAD shame.. what has our society done..no discipline no sturcture and no recourse.. I can not imagine the pain and trauma this will cause the driver,just to know that she hit and killed someones father, grandfather, brother, cousin, and friend... but hell how can we say he contributed to his own death...I bet if it was the offiers family member those statements would not have been documented..Tracey Tavares..

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