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Wrong-way cyclist in E. 38th St. hit-and-run was riding Citi Bike

BY THE VILLAGE SUN | Police have identified the type of bicycle that critically injured a woman in Murray Hill on Sept. 15.

According to police, the cyclist was riding a Citi Bike.

Police said the biker was going northbound — the wrong way — in the southbound bike lane at 38th Street and Second Avenue just after 7:30 a.m., when he struck a 59-year-old woman who was crossing the avenue in the crosswalk, heading from the intersection’s northeast corner to the northwest corner.

The cyclist left the scene. Police have released a photo of the man, who remains at large.

Asked if police have reached out to Lyft, the operator of Citi Bike, to identify the cyclist, a police spokesperson only responded, “The investigation is ongoing at this time.”

The latest update from police on the victim’s status is that she remains in a coma.

Following the violent E. 30s collision, police installed an electric signboard right in the middle of the bike lane for a few days that blared “Hit and Run” and requested people call Crime Stoppers hotline with information on the incident. The signboard was later relocated to the east side of the intersection — where few cyclists traveling in the Second Avenue bike lane are likely to see it.

More recently, last Wednesday and Thursday evenings, police set up a bike-lane “checkpoint” at the intersection. The Village Sun did not observe police stopping any cyclists at the spot, but the officers clearly did provide a visible presence. Some cyclists did go through the red light — even as police with flashing patrol car headlights flanked the bike lane. One “spandex” rider came whizzing down the bike lane, then veered sharply left onto the 38th Street bike lane, avoiding the main police checkpoint, while also blowing right through a red light in the process.

“Sometimes you can do more harm” if officers give chase to the scofflaw cyclists, the supervising officer on the scene noted.

Priscilla Loke worked at the Chinatown Head Start for more than 40 years and was looking forward to retiring and spending time with her niece’s children. She was fatally struck by an electric CitiBike on Sept. 5. (Photo by The Village Sun)

Less than two weeks before the Murray Hill incident, another woman was struck in Manhattan by a CitiBike, this one electric-powered — this time fatally. However, in that case, police were later able to locate the cyclist who fatally hit Priscilla Loke, 69, a longtime Chinatown preschool teacher, on Sept. 5 at the busy intersection of Grand and Chrystie Streets, which sports a two-way bike lane. Loke’s family members want answers from police on why the cyclist was initially allowed to leave the scene without providing his information — and they also want concrete information on who had the right of way.

Based on The Village Sun’s own analysis of traffic light patterns at the intersection, plus a video of the crash posted by Channel 7 Eyewitness News — which showed car traffic on Chrystie Street having already come to a stop at a red light prior to the crash — it’s likely the cyclist who struck Loke blew through the red light. The northbound bike lane’s traffic light is timed to sync exactly with the car traffic lights on Chrystie Street at the intersection. Police have not released surveillance video from the police cameras at the northwest corner of Grand and Chrystie Streets that, Loke’s family and supporters say, could possibly shed more light on the fateful incident.

Police kept an eye on bike traffic in the heavily used Second Avenue bike lane at 38th Street and Second Avenue on the night of Thurs., Sept. 28. Two weeks earlier, a female pedestrian was critically injured at the spot by a wrong-way e-CitiBike rider. (Photo by The Village Sun)

The type of e-CitiBike that hit Loke — one of the newer, white ones — are particularly heavy at 65 pounds, around triple the weight of a traditional bike, plus of course are moving faster than pedal-powered bikes.

In July, Hellgate reported that New York City caps the amount of e-bikes in Lyft’s fleet at 20 percent of its total — but that this isn’t “keeping up with demand.”

According to surveillance video from a merchant at the location, the cyclist in the Murray Hill hit-and-run was riding a regular, pedal-powered — not electric, pedal-assist — blue Citi Bike.

In another pedestrian-killed-by-cyclist incident from last year, police have apparently been unable to track down the pedal-powered biker who fatally hit Chelsea resident Gavin Lee, 44, as he was crossing Eighth Avenue at W. 22nd Street around 6:30 p.m. last Aug. 11. The cyclist was heading northbound when he slammed into Singapore native Lee, sending them both crashing to the ground. The cyclist got back onto his bike and fled the scene.

Police did not respond to a request from The Village Sun asking whether the cyclist who hit Lee was ever located.

Lee’s good friend Sebastian Feldmann had just arrived in New York City from Germany to visit him, only to find out he had been killed just a few days before.

“Compared to Germany, it is the Wild West over here,” Feldman observed at the time of New York City’s cycling scene. “It’s honestly shocking that no one seems to care about traffic rules. It’s just like thinking of ‘friendly recommendations’ rather than law! … It really strikes me that only very few people actually seem to think that rules in traffic exist for a purpose. … Why are bikes running the street in the wrong direction?”

He said, in Germany, cyclists know they can have points deducted on their driver’s licenses if they commit violations while biking, which compels better behavior.

In another recent e-bike-related Manhattan fatality, police said that on Sept. 16 around 1 a.m., Felix Patricio, 46, from Brooklyn was riding an e-bike at 47th Street and First Avenue when he went through the intersection and struck the median. He was pronounced dead from head trauma.

Correction: According to surveillance video, the wrong-way cyclist who struck a female pedestrian in Murray Hill, who was critically injured in the collision, was riding a regular, pedal-powered Citi Bike not an electric, pedal-assist Citi Bike, as stated in the original version of this article.


  1. JackDog JackDog October 4, 2023

    According to a current State Senator-in 2010-I was told” THE REASON THERE IS NO ENFORCEMENT IS BECAUSE TRANSPORTATION ALTERNATIVES DOESN’T WANT IT”Subsequently in a conversation Prof. John Pucher-Transportation expert and bike advocate he responded by saying” I TOLD THEM NOT TO DO THAT.” I was told by an aide to a then-City Councilmember and TA member “The more bikes on the streets – the safer the streets”. Possibly, but only with a RESPONSIBLE BIKE CULTURE. With a lawless bike culture, it creates anarchy and danger on the streets and sidewalks. Needless deaths, accidents and bludgeoning of the quality of life. It’s one thing for Charles Komanoff (sophist in chief of TA) and Mark Gorton (prinicpal funder) to advocate irrational policies. It’s another for the city administrations to go along with what is clearly irrational advocacy – contrary to what is operative in Europe from where the bike program is imported. The public has been taken for a ride. Similar to the deranged sociopathy of the Prince of Queens the recently commercially neutered Donald Trump.

    • John Campo John Campo October 6, 2023

      Trans Alt has been taken over by a hedgefund manager who has pored $37 million into the e-bikes and is raking it in. Trans Alt has also shot down the helmet law — wrap your head around that !!!!!!!

  2. Marty Curls Marty Curls October 3, 2023

    You can thank the brainless Mayor, who’s afraid of the cops, because he knows them, and they can do whatever they want or don’t want.

    Marty Curls

  3. linn broessel linn broessel October 3, 2023

    there should not be any traffic fatalities or injuries — there would be far fewer if traffic laws were obeyed. but were the deaths caused by cars because the cars ran a red light? a stop sign? were they going the wrong way on a one-way street? Cars are licensed; bikes should be.

    • Michael M. Michael M. October 3, 2023

      Mopeds too. 

      I would estimate that 3 out of 4 don’t have plates.  

      And there are already laws on the books about that. Zero enforcement. 

      Don’t even bother with tickets. Snip the air-valve stems. Going the wrong way? Snip the control cables. 

      • Jon Keller Jon Keller October 5, 2023

        Mopeds were observed recently being stopped and confiscated, if without a license and insurance, coming off the Williamsburg Bridge into Manhattan.

    • Kathy Brady Kathy Brady October 4, 2023

      The fact that cars can kill pedestrians does not give a free pass to lawless e-bikes, scooters, mopeds. At least cars have licenses and can be traced. 

  4. Brian Van Brian Van October 3, 2023

    In 2022, there were 118 pedestrian deaths in New York City. Three of them were caused by bicycles (including e-bikes) and the other 115 were caused by motor vehicles. Can we anticipate a rundown of all the pedestrians killed by automobiles in Manhattan, like this article? Or are cars not as dangerous?

    • Michael M. Michael M. October 3, 2023

      I hear ya.

      I dare say if the stats were on a per-vehicle-mile basis, the gap would be nowhere near as big.

      As we all know, scofflaw moped and e-bike riders are the norm — not the exception.  

      There is currently 0% enforcement, and 0% culpability. 

      That all needs to change. 

    • sam sam October 3, 2023

      A few notes:
      1.Data does not reflect terminal injuries that lead to permanent inury or death, for example, an elderly person is hit by a bicyclist, falls, breaks a hip — never regains mobility and passes away. This happens more frequently than is realized.

      2. Vehicles are inherently more dangerous, no question. But most vehicle crashes and fatalities in NYC involve people who are using drugs/alcohol or unlicensed/lost license or committing some criminal act, like theft or super-speeding or multiple of these. Plus the majority occur at night.

      3. There are many more vehicles on the road compared to bicycles, so the proportion must also be considered.

      BTW, I don’t drive.
      Daily I see bicycles (regular and ebike) nearly hitting pedestrians.
      I don’t see vehicles nearly hitting pedestrians daily.

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