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World Naked Bike Ride cyclists kicked off their bikes in shocking attack

UPDATE: West Midlands Police "sorry" marshal suffered broken elbow — insists CCTV and other footage was reviewed but "available footage was not of sufficient quality to identify a suspect"...

UPDATE 07/06/2022 14:30 Following contact from road.cc, West Midlands Police offered the following statement in reply to the story below.

As part of our investigation into a cyclist being knocked from his bicycle on Albany Road, Coventry, on 28 May, we did review CCTV and other video footage handed in to us.

We're very sorry he was injured and an investigator contacted him on Wednesday (1 June) to say that the available footage was not of sufficient quality to identify a suspect.

But if anyone does have further information about the incident they should contact us via Live Chat at west-midlands.police.uk, or call 101, quoting investigation number 20/508355/22.

A marshal at last weekend's World Naked Bike Ride in Coventry suffered a broken elbow in an attack by masked aggressors who kicked two riders off their bikes.

The incident occurred as the group of around 40 — riding to "draw attention to the absurdity of oil and gas dependency" — made their way from the Criterion Theatre through the city.

As they approached Broomfield Road two attackers riding what appeared to be powerful electric bikes or trail dirt bikes overtook the group, kicking the event marshal and organiser Joe Swanton-Fallowell off their bikes, bringing down other riders in the process.

"I landed on my arm and immediately felt pain; I could not fully rotate my wrist and we called 999 for West Midlands Police to attend," the marshal told road.cc.

"The attackers waited on the other side of the junction, and police originally said they would arrive immediately. Other members of the group photographed the motorcyclists, but ten minutes later the police called back to say they were not prepared to attend. The louts rode off down Albany Road, towards the city centre at around 14.15.

"There was no other abuse on the ride before that incident; we had some unsavoury muppets on social media before the ride. 

"I went to Victoria Infirmary in Northwich that night. I have been in pain, and have taken pain inhibitors for the first time in 15 years. I should know this week if I need surgery on it. I have a broken radial head which is six weeks plus to heal. I cannot ride, drive or do my job."

The marshal was left disappointed by West Midlands Police's "unacceptable" response to the attack. "Them not catching the perpetrators, I can live with. Them not trying is unacceptable," he said.

"I reported it later that night after being on hold for over an hour an investigating officer rang me the following day and said that they would not have chased anyone on motorbikes and that they would likely not be able to identify the attackers and would not investigate.

"I sent them the footage and they have refused to investigate, closing down my crime reference the following day. They do not care; as cyclists we are vulnerable and they could not be bothered to attend.

 "We have the footage, and there are traffic cameras in Coventry — at the end of Albany Road, around 100m away — which would have captured them but it needs the police to investigate. I cannot provide them with traffic cam footage.

"They have taken a laissez-faire attitude to a violent assault on cyclists. The next time these thugs kick a cyclist from their bike it won't be a broken elbow but something far more serious, and responsibility will lie with West Midlands Police who refused to investigate the previous attack."

A West Midlands Police spokesperson has previously told the Coventry Telegraph: "Sadly there are no investigative opportunities at this time that allow us identify the suspect. This will have been a nasty shock for the man who came off his bike and I hope he's not been deterred from riding."

road.cc has contacted West Midlands Police for comment.

"My local force is brilliant and investigates every crime I have reported. If WMP wants people to leave their cars at home, then they should start policing the roads as they are obligated to do," the marshal continued.

"Them not catching the perpetrators, I can live with. Not trying is unacceptable.

"I want to mention Joe and the rest of World Naked Bike Ride Coventry; this sort of thing does not happen on WNBR rides and they have supported me as I tried to get West Midlands Police to take this seriously. I intend to marshal at WNBR Coventry next year as you cannot let these thugs win."

Dan is the road.cc news editor and has spent the past four years writing stories and features, as well as (hopefully) keeping you entertained on the live blog. Having previously written about nearly every other sport under the sun for the Express, and the weird and wonderful world of non-league football for the Non-League Paper, Dan joined road.cc in 2020. Come the weekend you'll find him labouring up a hill, probably with a mouth full of jelly babies, or making a bonk-induced trip to a south of England petrol station... in search of more jelly babies.

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36 comments

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vthejk | 2 years ago
0 likes

Coventry is not a place I especially enjoying ride my bike in for this precise reason (and I live there!). The road surfaces are not amazing, the city centre can get really quite narrow and fidgety to ride around and that bit of road in Earlsdon the ride was going through is usually plenty busy. And now I can add illegal e-bike criminal assault to that list!! I hope the Naked Bike riders will be ok.

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Jenova20 | 2 years ago
0 likes

For reference i've over 150 police reports logged with West Midlands Police and had zero feedback on any, even when i've requested it. West Midlands Police are corrupt from top to bottom and don't investigate crimes unless they get significant media coverage or affect someone related to the police.

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IanGlasgow | 2 years ago
1 like

The "motorbikes" look like illegal ebikes.

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AlsoSomniloquism replied to IanGlasgow | 2 years ago
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 Look like these. Edit: Different Website link.

Just wonder where they robbed them from. 

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mallardz replied to AlsoSomniloquism | 2 years ago
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Isnt that a bit of a dodgy site to link to here?! It does seem to come up very early in google searches for segway ebikes, but that is not a normal retail price for a dirt ebike, "flash sale for first 100 units" or not! I don't think most on this site would fall for the scam but still probably better not to give the site the publicity or the free links for seo. 

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AlsoSomniloquism replied to mallardz | 2 years ago
1 like

I was using it for the image on there and not for anyone here to rush to buy some. But I take your point and have put on a more legit site. 

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open_roads | 2 years ago
4 likes

"Sadly there are no investigative opportunities at this time that allow us identify the suspect."

in other words - "if we don't look we won't find, and if we don't look or find we can continue sitting on our backsides complaining about a lack of resources"

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Jenova20 replied to open_roads | 2 years ago
1 like

This is the same police force that allowed someone to walk around Birmingham stabbing people for 2 hours before bothering to actual respond and do something. They're corrupt.

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AlsoSomniloquism replied to Jenova20 | 2 years ago
0 likes

Whilst not one to usually leap to  WMP defence but with the incident you are referring to, the totally random nature and timings of the attacks did not help them. The defendent actually went home at one point in a taxi and then came back to another part of the city centre. Eyewitness reports state that when he attacked at 2am in Hurst Street, the next thing they knew the area was swarming with Police and helicoptors so by then they were out in force to try to stop it. However again, the perp had decided to go home again.

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Jenova20 replied to AlsoSomniloquism | 2 years ago
0 likes

AlsoSomniloquism wrote:

Whilst not one to usually leap to  WMP defence but with the incident you are referring to, the totally random nature and timings of the attacks did not help them. The defendent actually went home at one point in a taxi and then came back to another part of the city centre. Eyewitness reports state that when he attacked at 2am in Hurst Street, the next thing they knew the area was swarming with Police and helicoptors so by then they were out in force to try to stop it. However again, the perp had decided to go home again.

Random timings? The perpetrator travelled along a busy road stabbing multiple people over the space of 2 hours. They didn't even travel to the area to investigate. Multiple sources at the time stated the perpetrator was ignored until he got closer to the gay village, at which point the police immediately sprung into action to avoid the negative media attention. West Midlands Police don't do anything but police behaviour online and damage control for the force. They're an embarassment.

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AlsoSomniloquism replied to Jenova20 | 2 years ago
0 likes

I think you need to re-read the case. After his first few attacks north of the City Centre, he went into a Pizza place to get a knife but they allowed him to call for a taxi home. He went home, got another knife, taxi'd back in and ended up south side where he then continued his attacks. So although his attacks were over a two hour period, his presence in the city was alot less. He was not travelling along a busy road attacking people for two hours straight as per your statement. 

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wtjs replied to open_roads | 2 years ago
4 likes

 "if we don't look we won't find, and if we don't look or find we can continue sitting on our backsides complaining about a lack of resources"

This registration doesn't exist. It was reported on 17th May, and it's on the public road outside the same house today. In the meantime, it's been away on holiday for a week or so. The house is 1/4 mile from Garstang Police Station, where there are always numerous parked police vehicles. 

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Secret_squirrel replied to wtjs | 2 years ago
1 like

Report it to the council as abandoned and the DVLA not SORNed, and to the rozzers as a stolen vehicle.

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wtjs replied to Secret_squirrel | 2 years ago
0 likes

Report it to the council as abandoned and the DVLA not SORNed, and to the rozzers as a stolen vehicle

It appears that, despite my not inconsiderable efforts, the message about how crap and bent Lancashire Constabulary is has not been adequately disseminated. Reporting anything to the police here results in no response and no action. SORN is hardly relevant as the registration doesn't exist. There are loads of these around here, but this is the only one I know of which is always parked outside the same house and can therefore be easily dealt with. They do nothing about all the 'No MOT' cases either- I only report them to the OpSnapLancs Black Hole to build up my case.

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OnYerBike replied to wtjs | 2 years ago
1 like

wtjs wrote:

Report it to the council as abandoned and the DVLA not SORNed, and to the rozzers as a stolen vehicle

It appears that, despite my not inconsiderable efforts, the message about how crap and bent Lancashire Constabulary is has not been adequately disseminated. Reporting anything to the police here results in no response and no action. SORN is hardly relevant as the registration doesn't exist. There are loads of these around here, but this is the only one I know of which is always parked outside the same house and can therefore be easily dealt with. They do nothing about all the 'No MOT' cases either- I only report them to the OpSnapLancs Black Hole to build up my case.

I think squirrel's point is that you can bypass the police entirely and some action might then be taken - e.g. report it here rather than to OpSnap.

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wtjs replied to OnYerBike | 2 years ago
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e.g. report it here rather than to OpSnap

QED! Report what exactly, to a mob down in Swansea who are only minimally interested even in VED evasion and have no authority over 'No MOT'? Even if they don't just immediately bin every report in the 'too difficult, all that way up there' file, it's going to be like a bunch of Daleks crashing into each other while wailing 'Does not compute- AN61 VER does not exist!!' and then exploding all their diodes

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Roulereo | 2 years ago
1 like

Funny that the blowhards are all too happy to comment on American politics and even guns here on this site, yet have nothing to say about their own backyard

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Hirsute replied to Roulereo | 2 years ago
6 likes

The first 2 comments covered it and have 22 likes at the moment.

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AlsoSomniloquism replied to Roulereo | 2 years ago
10 likes

So we can't comment on 19 children shot dead needlessly with legally obtained weapons because some knobhead on this side of the atlantic kicked somebody off their bike for no reason. 

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hawkinspeter replied to Roulereo | 2 years ago
5 likes

Roulereo wrote:

Funny that the blowhards are all too happy to comment on American politics and even guns here on this site, yet have nothing to say about their own backyard

We're always complaining about politicians in this country, so I don't know what you're on about. There's even been people complaining about too much complaining about Tories (I think we're quite happy to complain about other parties too).

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Secret_squirrel replied to hawkinspeter | 2 years ago
3 likes

hawkinspeter wrote:

We're always complaining about politicians in this country, so I don't know what you're on about. There's even been people complaining about too much complaining about Tories (I think we're quite happy to complain about other parties too).

Indeed.  I've just come from complaining about a Labour Mayor on the Weymouth Axe story.  Its almost as if we care more about our shared passion (cycling for most of us here) than politics.  Any political thread tends to be viewed through that lens, certain monomaniacs aside.  Not you Peter unless you count the squirrels  3

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hawkinspeter replied to Secret_squirrel | 2 years ago
3 likes

Secret_squirrel wrote:

Indeed.  I've just come from complaining about a Labour Mayor on the Weymouth Axe story.  Its almost as if we care more about our shared passion (cycling for most of us here) than politics.  Any political thread tends to be viewed through that lens, certain monomaniacs aside.  Not you Peter unless you count the squirrels  3

I've tried, but they just keep running around and I lose count

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AlsoSomniloquism replied to hawkinspeter | 2 years ago
4 likes

That is why they need tabards with registration numbers emblazoned on them. 

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hawkinspeter replied to AlsoSomniloquism | 2 years ago
4 likes

AlsoSomniloquism wrote:

That is why they need tabards with registration numbers emblazoned on them. 

Have you tried getting them to wear them? I recommend extremely tough gloves.

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Rendel Harris replied to Roulereo | 2 years ago
7 likes

Roulereo wrote:

Funny that the blowhards are all too happy to comment on American politics and even guns here on this site, yet have nothing to say about their own backyard

Are you really going for that? "Yes we have 40,000+ gun deaths per year but you Brits have no right to talk about them because look, a couple of arseholes on motorbikes knocked off some people on bicycles."

I can see at least one blowhard on this comment thread, well done for keeping the average up.

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brooksby replied to Roulereo | 2 years ago
7 likes

Roulereo wrote:

Funny that the blowhards are all too happy to comment on American politics and even guns here on this site, yet have nothing to say about their own backyard

In all fairness, I think that we only comment on here about the American "politics of guns" because from the point of view of many (if not most?) people in Europe and the UK, the US attitude toward guns seems to be completely f-ing insane.

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Secret_squirrel replied to brooksby | 2 years ago
5 likes

brooksby wrote:

because from the point of view of many (if not most?) people in Europe and the UK, the US attitude toward guns seems to be completely f-ing insane.

RoW: thank god we have a stable enough civilian government that we can severely limit the availability of killer weapons to the general public.

USA : YeeHaw! Lets twist a valid part of the constitution that was about raising Militias for defence during the Wars of Independence into our god given right to let kids die in schools and us to die mostly by our own weapons.  That'll look good to the RoW - real world leadership right there.

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chrisonabike replied to Secret_squirrel | 2 years ago
2 likes

Say what you like, but it's kept America free and the citizens have never been terrorised or oppressed by authority there.

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hawkinspeter replied to chrisonabike | 2 years ago
4 likes

chrisonatrike wrote:

Say what you like, but it's kept America free and the citizens have never been terrorised or oppressed by authority there.

*cough* McCarthyism *cough*

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chrisonabike replied to hawkinspeter | 2 years ago
2 likes

Shurely the real problem wasn't if you were red, but not white?  Or just if you happened to live conveniently near a nuclear test site.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unethical_human_experimentation_in_the_United_States#Fallout_research

We've been quite happy to do a bit of that here too though.  The problem is - being armed to the teeth with small arms doesn't tend to stop the state putting rounds through you if and when it decides you've gone beyond the pale.

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