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Emma Way found guilty on 2 of 3 counts in #bloodycyclists case

Motorist says on 1 to 10 stupidity scale, her tweet was 11

Emma Way, the motorist who tweeted about having knocked a cyclist from his bike, has been found guilty of failing to stop after an accident and failure to report an accident. However, she has been cleared of a third count relating to careless driving.

Way was fined £300, will have her driving licence endorsed with 7 penalty points and also has to pay £337 in costs.

The BBC reported that earlier today, she had told Norwich Magistrates' Court: "The tweet was spur of the moment. It was ridiculous and stupid and I apologise to all cyclists."

She added that posting that message on Twitter is “the biggest regret of my life so far.”

Shortly after the incident in Rockland, Norfolk on Sunday 19 May which left cyclist Toby Hockley with minor injuries, Way posted a tweet on the social network that read: “Definitely knocked a cyclist off his bike earlier – I have right of way he doesn't even pay road tax!" together with the hashtag, #bloodycyclists.

The 21-year-old was charged with careless driving, failing to stop after an accident and failing to report an accident.

Way told Norwich Magistrates’ Court tday that as a result of her tweet, and the media storm that followed, she had lost her job as a trainee accountant.

ITV reports that her solicitor asked her to rate, on a scale of 1 to 10, how stupid it was to tweet about the incident. She replied, “11.”

Way, who denied the charges, claimed that the handlebars of Mr Hockley’s bike had clipped her vehicle and that she saw him wobble slightly as she looked into her rear-view mirror, leading her to assume he was okay. She added that she was unable to stop due to a blind corner.

The cyclist, riding a sportive with a friend, told the court that although he did not come off his bike, he did end up in a hedge.

"A car came around the corner, narrowly missing Jay," he recalled.

"The car was heading over to my side of the road.

"I was hit on the leg by the wing and on the arm by the wing mirror and tried to slam on my brakes to regain control."

That infamous #bloodycyclists hashtag was reappropriated by cyclists in the wake of May's incident, with Mr Hockley himself helping set up the bloodycyclist.com website which aims to "raise some awareness and money for some of the dangers that face cyclists on a daily occurrence."

Merchandise including a #bloodycyclist jersey can be bought through the site.

 

Simon joined road.cc as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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103 comments

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bendertherobot | 10 years ago
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Quite a lot of wide of the mark statements here. Failing to stop and/or report ARE the worst of the charges. The careless is a side show and was always going to be the difficult one to prove.

She's been convicted of the ones which she herself brought down. There's the karma here.

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Stim | 10 years ago
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The dumb bitch will probably be given a guest spot on that heinous flat slob demon Nick Ferrari show on Lbc(Lickspittle bent c*nts) between Latin spewing effluent blob Bozo the mayor and Tory arse bandit traitor clegg
The moral of these fucking slap on the wrists is that motorists are given carte blanche to kill us with impunity,intentional or not,end of story
 41

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arfa | 10 years ago
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Colin, I note she had suffered away from the judicial process but a key element of an effective criminal legal system is deterrence and there is absolutely nothing in her sentence to deter bad driving. And we wonder why HGV'S have been on a bit of a kill fest in the last couple of weeks.

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Colin Peyresourde replied to arfa | 10 years ago
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arfa wrote:

And we wonder why HGV'S have been on a bit of a kill fest in the last couple of weeks.

That's a bit steep don't you think!? They couldn't prove bad driving in the case which is why they haven't removed her license. You can't punish her arbitrarily. Lord knows why they did it to Gkam though.

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md6 | 10 years ago
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The only positive I am taking from this is that she was found guilty on 2 of the 3 counts. OK, not the main one of importance, but its better than the normal outcomes reported here when the lesser charge is brought then people are found not guilty. Small steps i guess...

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mikem22 | 10 years ago
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We could always bombard ITV..

http://www.itv.com/contactus/get-in-touch/

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tom_w replied to mikem22 | 10 years ago
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mikem22 wrote:

We could always bombard ITV..

http://www.itv.com/contactus/get-in-touch/

I fear that will only encourage them

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colinth | 10 years ago
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Proving the careless driving was probably the hardest bit, her word against the cyclists I suppose. I'm actually suprised and delighted that it got this far, I expected the usual can't be bothered approach from the CPS.

She might make a few quid from ITV (who we should all email / tweet I'd say) but her career as an accountant is pretty screwed. Getting a trainee position as an accountant is very difficult so hopefully this incident will make it even harder for her. I don't normally gloat in people misfortune but not ashamed to say I am here

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Jimbonic replied to colinth | 10 years ago
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colinth wrote:

Proving the careless driving was probably the hardest bit, her word against the cyclists I suppose. I'm actually suprised and delighted that it got this far, I expected the usual can't be bothered approach from the CPS.

She hit a cyclist. How is that not driving without due care and attention? She didn't give enough room. It's not someone's word against the other's. In fact, she even said "I hit a cyclist today"!!!!

I agree, though, that it is pleasantly surprising to see it get taken this far. Even if the conviction is disproportionately low.

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Colin Peyresourde replied to Jimbonic | 10 years ago
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Jimbonic wrote:
colinth wrote:

Proving the careless driving was probably the hardest bit, her word against the cyclists I suppose. I'm actually suprised and delighted that it got this far, I expected the usual can't be bothered approach from the CPS.

She hit a cyclist. How is that not driving without due care and attention? She didn't give enough room. It's not someone's word against the other's. In fact, she even said "I hit a cyclist today"!!!!

I agree, though, that it is pleasantly surprising to see it get taken this far. Even if the conviction is disproportionately low.

Colinth is right. Proving the careless driving is not easy. Her word against his. He has nothing to indicate how fast she was going, and had not made an effort to report the incident himself from what I remember. It was also not a head-on collision which suggests that she at least left some room for someone to move passed her (even if it was an inch). I'm not saying she wasn't careless or anything else - but that proving it is not possible. Who is to say he was not cycling without due care and attention down a hill? I'm sure that is the defence.

Ultimately, she has seen British justice and will likely have learned something from all of this.

Gkam - sorry to hear of your incident. That seems a little unfair.

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Jimbonic replied to Colin Peyresourde | 10 years ago
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Colin Peyresourde wrote:
Jimbonic wrote:
colinth wrote:

Proving the careless driving was probably the hardest bit, her word against the cyclists I suppose. I'm actually suprised and delighted that it got this far, I expected the usual can't be bothered approach from the CPS.

She hit a cyclist. How is that not driving without due care and attention? She didn't give enough room. It's not someone's word against the other's. In fact, she even said "I hit a cyclist today"!!!!

I agree, though, that it is pleasantly surprising to see it get taken this far. Even if the conviction is disproportionately low.

Colinth is right. Proving the careless driving is not easy. Her word against his. He has nothing to indicate how fast she was going, and had not made an effort to report the incident himself from what I remember. It was also not a head-on collision which suggests that she at least left some room for someone to move passed her (even if it was an inch). I'm not saying she wasn't careless or anything else - but that proving it is not possible. Who is to say he was not cycling without due care and attention down a hill? I'm sure that is the defence.

Ultimately, she has seen British justice and will likely have learned something from all of this.

Gkam - sorry to hear of your incident. That seems a little unfair.

Unless he was riding on the right hand carriage way, I don't see your point. The cyclist is entitled to use the road. What does her speed have to do with it? She passed unsafely, if she hit the cyclist. The Highway Code quite clearly states that you have to give at least the same room as you would a motor vehicle when passing a cyclist. Of course, we rarely see that. Your example of "an inch" is closer! I would hardly say that is safe or driving with due care.

What does his not reporting it have to do with it? I'm sure there many people on this very forum (even the most militant) who have been the victim of some sort of accident (or worse) and haven't reported it. It doesn't make the driving any safer. It doesn't absolve her of her duty to report the accident, or absolve her of driving without due care and attention.

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colinth replied to Jimbonic | 10 years ago
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Jimbonic wrote:
Colin Peyresourde wrote:
Jimbonic wrote:
colinth wrote:

Proving the careless driving was probably the hardest bit, her word against the cyclists I suppose. I'm actually suprised and delighted that it got this far, I expected the usual can't be bothered approach from the CPS.

She hit a cyclist. How is that not driving without due care and attention? She didn't give enough room. It's not someone's word against the other's. In fact, she even said "I hit a cyclist today"!!!!

I agree, though, that it is pleasantly surprising to see it get taken this far. Even if the conviction is disproportionately low.

Colinth is right. Proving the careless driving is not easy. Her word against his. He has nothing to indicate how fast she was going, and had not made an effort to report the incident himself from what I remember. It was also not a head-on collision which suggests that she at least left some room for someone to move passed her (even if it was an inch). I'm not saying she wasn't careless or anything else - but that proving it is not possible. Who is to say he was not cycling without due care and attention down a hill? I'm sure that is the defence.

Ultimately, she has seen British justice and will likely have learned something from all of this.

Gkam - sorry to hear of your incident. That seems a little unfair.

Unless he was riding on the right hand carriage way, I don't see your point. The cyclist is entitled to use the road. What does her speed have to do with it? She passed unsafely, if she hit the cyclist. The Highway Code quite clearly states that you have to give at least the same room as you would a motor vehicle when passing a cyclist. Of course, we rarely see that. Your example of "an inch" is closer! I would hardly say that is safe or driving with due care.

.

I think they were travelling in opposite directions weren't they ? Even if they were heading in the same direction, she could have said she was passing safely and the bike moved out suddenly without warning across the lane etc. Not saying that's what happened, it's just very difficult to prove in court without multiple witnesses or cctv

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oozaveared replied to Colin Peyresourde | 10 years ago
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"Her word against his. He has nothing to indicate how fast she was going, and had not made an effort to report the incident himself from what I remember."

That remark annoyed me no end. I bet loads of cyclists don't report stuff like this because they know it's a waste of time even if they did have the number plate and a description of the driver. If it was a head on (as the article describes) and she merely drove on then he's unlikely to have had either.

I wouldn't have reported it either because I'd be wasting the time of the police. I'd have had no licence plate, no description. Unless you knew an exact model about all you could say was that a (insert colour) car clipped you and drove off.

What the hell could they do with that! Even if you had a number plate it would still be her word against his and she could even deny being the driver or be confused as to who was.

Not reporting it doesn't mean it wasn't serious or potentially fatal. It's merely a recognition that there was not much factual / identity stuff to report.

However, if someone subsequently admits the offence albeit inadvertantly that's a different matter.

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colinth replied to Jimbonic | 10 years ago
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Jimbonic wrote:
colinth wrote:

Proving the careless driving was probably the hardest bit, her word against the cyclists I suppose. I'm actually suprised and delighted that it got this far, I expected the usual can't be bothered approach from the CPS.

She hit a cyclist. How is that not driving without due care and attention? She didn't give enough room. It's not someone's word against the other's. In fact, she even said "I hit a cyclist today"!!!!

I agree, though, that it is pleasantly surprising to see it get taken this far. Even if the conviction is disproportionately low.

Because I'm sure her defence was "he was on the wrong side of the road". "no I wasn't you were", "I wasn't you were" etc

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Jimbonic replied to colinth | 10 years ago
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colinth wrote:
Jimbonic wrote:
colinth wrote:

Proving the careless driving was probably the hardest bit, her word against the cyclists I suppose. I'm actually suprised and delighted that it got this far, I expected the usual can't be bothered approach from the CPS.

She hit a cyclist. How is that not driving without due care and attention? She didn't give enough room. It's not someone's word against the other's. In fact, she even said "I hit a cyclist today"!!!!

I agree, though, that it is pleasantly surprising to see it get taken this far. Even if the conviction is disproportionately low.

Because I'm sure her defence was "he was on the wrong side of the road". "no I wasn't you were", "I wasn't you were" etc

Was it a head on, then? I thought she was passing in the same direction.

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colinth replied to Jimbonic | 10 years ago
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Not sure to be honest, same direction would have been a bit easier to prove but any decent lawyer would be able to create enough doubt I'd say

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Colin Peyresourde replied to Jimbonic | 10 years ago
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Jimbonic wrote:

Was it a head on, then? I thought she was passing in the same direction.

I've found the quote from Road.cc for people:

"I was riding on a country B-road with a friend, and descending a hill on a blind right hand corner", Toby told us. "I was sticking to the left as the corner was blind. A car came round in the opposite direction going much too quickly to make the corner safely. It missed the rider in front of me but hit me, my right leg caught the front right wing. I was thrown up onto the bonnet, I hit the side of windsrceen and the wing mirror. I bounced back off the car and went through a hedge for about 20 metres. I managed to keep control of the bike; the back brake had locked on but I managed to rejoin the road and stop in the middle of it"

Amazingly Toby made it through the incident with only minor damage to himself and the bike. "I have a sore elbow, a bruised knee, nettle stings from riding through the hedge, but nothing serious", he told us. "The headset of the bike is loose from the collision, one of the levers got knocked round the bars and there's bits of nettle in the chain, but I think the bike is intact."

"Myself and my friend burst out laughing when we finally came to a stop, more out of shock than anything else", he said. "You count your limbs and carry on".

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Jimbonic replied to Colin Peyresourde | 10 years ago
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Colin Peyresourde wrote:
Jimbonic wrote:

Was it a head on, then? I thought she was passing in the same direction.

I've found the quote from Road.cc for people:

Thanks, Colin.

Still room for doubt in the eyes of the Magistrate, I guess. But, I will stick with "he had a witness".

He did very well for someone who "bounced over the bonnet". Last time I did that I had a face that looked like prime steak!

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mrmo | 10 years ago
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how do you complain to ITV for paying convicted criminals for their story? I guess the autobiography is next.

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arfa | 10 years ago
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Cheers dp24.
So on the basis of this magistrate's reasoning, competent drivers can collide with other road users forcing them off the road.
I stand by my earlier conclusion.

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AyBee | 10 years ago
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I bet her previous accountancy firm employer is pleased they didn't hire her, she doesn't even know that 11 is not on the scale of 1-10!

She's not sorry she knocked him off, she's sorry she got caught - outrageous that she wasn't banned!

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lukea-d | 10 years ago
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“the biggest regret of my life so far.” She thinks there's going to be bigger regrets to come?

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Carlton Reid | 10 years ago
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She has signed a TV deal with ITV's Daybreak. She's gonna be profiting from all this. I kid you not.

http://ipayroadtax.com/no-such-thing-as-road-tax/i-knocked-a-cyclist-off...

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mrmo replied to Carlton Reid | 10 years ago
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Carlton Reid wrote:

She has signed a TV deal with ITV's Daybreak. She's gonna be profiting from all this. I kid you not.

http://ipayroadtax.com/no-such-thing-as-road-tax/i-knocked-a-cyclist-off...

I thought it was illegal to make money from crime!

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allez neg | 10 years ago
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I'm getting to be of the opinion that some form of helmet cam is a very wise investment. I got one a couple of years ago for about £90 from dogcam, initially for motorbike use but on reflection, I reckon I'll be attaching it to my roadie helmet from now on.

What better way of establishing what happened in an accident and its aftermath than having it recorded?

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mrmo replied to allez neg | 10 years ago
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allez neg wrote:

What better way of establishing what happened in an accident and its aftermath than having it recorded?

You are assuming the police don't loose it, or the judge accepts that all footage has been edited to look worse than it was!

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mrmo | 10 years ago
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Quote:

"A person is to be regarded as driving without due care and attention if (and only if) the way he drives falls below what would be expected of a competent and careful driver."

Yes the standard of drunk, deaf blind, later middle aged magistrate after a couple of bottles of gin to steady their nerves!!!!!!

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allez neg | 10 years ago
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On the plus side, 7 points and 21 years old will mean that insurance will cost her a fuckload of money, but I agree that a ban would have been appropriate.

My licence got a 40 day holiday for a single occurrence of speeding. I neither hurt nor inconvenienced anyone.

Private prosecution for physical and psychological injury in the offing? The CTC or some other cycling body could fund it.

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Colin Peyresourde replied to allez neg | 10 years ago
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allez neg wrote:

On the plus side, 7 points and 21 years old will mean that insurance will cost her a fuckload of money, but I agree that a ban would have been appropriate.

My licence got a 40 day holiday for a single occurrence of speeding. I neither hurt nor inconvenienced anyone.

Private prosecution for physical and psychological injury in the offing? The CTC or some other cycling body could fund it.

Don't forget, she lost her job too, a conviction in court also, not something that she will easily move on from. I know they don't always say, but I'm sure that the judge included this when considering her punishment.

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Simmo72 | 10 years ago
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Should be 12 month ban and a month working in a morgue to make the point sink in

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