Bond set in Aiken cyclist death

Wednesday, Feb. 9, 2011 3:49 PM
Last updated Thursday, Feb. 10, 2011 10:35 AM
  • Follow Crime & courts

A $50,000 bond was set this afternoon for Daniel Johnson, 41, who was arrested Tuesday and charged with reckless homicide in an October crash that killed a bicyclist.

Daniel Johnson (right) before magistrate Wednesday  Rainier Ehrhardt/Staff
Rainier Ehrhardt/Staff
Daniel Johnson (right) before magistrate Wednesday


Magistrate Bond Judge Danny Lynn also said Johnson cannot leave the state and cannot contact the victim's family.

Johnson was charged 19 weeks after a crash on Beech Island Avenue that critically injured Dr. Matthew Burke, an orthopedic surgeon at Fort Gordon. Burke died Sunday.

Comments (14) Add comment
ADVISORY: Users are solely responsible for opinions they post here and for following agreed-upon rules of civility. Posts and comments do not reflect the views of this site. Posts and comments are automatically checked for inappropriate language, but readers might find some comments offensive or inaccurate. If you believe a comment violates our rules, click the "Flag as offensive" link below the comment.
corgimom
38354
Points
corgimom 02/09/11 - 04:27 pm
0
0
An observation- the next time

An observation- the next time I come to the CSRA, I will have no worries, because I know that all the car drivers and bike riders are perfect.

Anyone that thinks they are a perfect driver or a perfect cyclist is lying to themselves. Because we ALL get distracted. We ALL have dropped things. We ALL have reached for sunglasses, or tended to a child, or turned around to look to see what a child is doing in the backseat. We ALL have looked at billboards, or the crazy driver next to us, or the scenery. We ALL have. The only difference between us and that driver and that bicyclist is luck. Theirs ran out on that day.

And for all of the people on here condemning either man, and "knowing" what he thought and "knowing" what he did-

Ever heard "There but the grace of God go I?"

If you've ever ridden a bike on a public road or driven a car, that could be YOU.

What happened was a terrible tragedy for everyone involved. Period.

athome
95
Points
athome 02/09/11 - 04:49 pm
0
0
You are so right Corgimom.

You are so right Corgimom. Sometimes an accident is just that: An ACCIDENT!! It seems to me that neither the cyclists or Mr Johnson was doing anything to cause this accident. All the raging comments suggest that his punishment should be worse because Dr Burke was a promising young doctor. What if he were not? I pray for the Johnson family as well as the Burkes. Their grief is also great. He is also a promising young man with redeeming qualities who will live with this every day of his life.

burninater
9921
Points
burninater 02/09/11 - 05:07 pm
0
0
"Anyone that thinks they are

"Anyone that thinks they are a perfect driver or a perfect cyclist is lying to themselves. Because we ALL get distracted. We ALL have dropped things. We ALL have reached for sunglasses, or tended to a child, or turned around to look to see what a child is doing in the backseat. We ALL have looked at billboards, or the crazy driver next to us, or the scenery. We ALL have."
-----------------
yes Corgi, we have. And if we struck and killed someone while at the wheel as a result of not paying attention to the road, we too would be facing charges of vehicular homicide. Every time we decide something is more important than paying attention to the road, we are taking the chance that we will cause the death of another, and face jail time for it.

It's really that simple. We all have the freedom of choosing how we will approach the responsibility of operating a vehicle. There are real consequences to not taking it seriously.

TrekStoreManager
0
Points
TrekStoreManager 02/09/11 - 06:11 pm
0
0
I've been following this

I've been following this story and am very sorry for the family's loss. After working in a bike shop for 10 years, I have seen many accidents with bicycles and cars. Some of my friends have been seriously injured, and only one person I have known personally has been killed. We as cyclists all know the risk involved in what we do.

That being said, I lead beginner groups every week and it is my job to make sure everyone obeys the laws. I can tell you that it does not matter whether or not you are riding single file, on the white line, using hand signals, in reflective clothing, with lights and a sign that says "Please do not hit me. Thank you." you will get buzzed by irritated or distracted drivers. There are too many drivers especially in the southeast that despise cyclists.

I have contemplated just hanging up my road bike and mountain biking only a million times. I won't do that because that would be giving up on what I love. To me it is worth the risk. The fix is not to kick cyclists off the road, it is to educate drivers as to why we are there and to build more bike infrastructure in the area. Cycling is a little solutions to a lot of big problems (obesity, high gas prices, traffic, air pollution).

Bottom line is that cyclists aren't going anywhere because cycling is great. If more of you people who are upset with cyclist came down to my shop, bought a bike, and started riding with me, it would change the way you look at us. When you are in your car take a deep breath, slow down, and pass at a safe distance. Once around smile, wave and think about how easy that was. If Mr. Johnson would have taken my advice, Anna might not have to grow up without her father. Peace be with all involved in this tragic event.

IHeartMyH2
0
Points
IHeartMyH2 02/09/11 - 06:28 pm
0
0
Corgimom, while your spirit

Corgimom, while your spirit of forgiveness is laudable, I have to disagree. Let us say that I'm in my backyard taking target practice with my pistol - perfectly legal. Now lets say that I get a little distracted - can't remember by what, exactly - and accidentally fire that gun into my neighbor's yard, resulting in my neighbor dying some months later after a protracted fight for his life. Do we just chalk that up to a simple mistake? As in, 'whoops, accidents happen, guess I should probably pay a little more attention to where I shoot that gun next time.' Or do we blame the victim? As in, 'that guy should have known better than to be out raking his leaves when he knew full well that I was shooting my gun next door.' I suspect the answer is: neither. I'll end up being charged for my neighbor's death. Not murder, mind you - it was an accident and all - but there will and should be some penalty for my carelessness with a dangerous weapon. And that penalty should serve to remind others that careless mistakes that lead to the death of others are not acceptable.

Now, why is it any different if I were to kill someone with my car?

corgimom
38354
Points
corgimom 02/09/11 - 07:51 pm
0
0
TrekStoreManager-"If more of

TrekStoreManager-"If more of you people who are upset with cyclist came down to my shop, bought a bike, and started riding with me, it would change the way you look at us."

TSM, you are assuming that all of us are fools who have never, ever, in their lives, ridden a bike on a public road.

Offhand, I don't know anyone who hasn't.

And IHeart, I hope to God that you don't consider firing a pistol in a residential yard normal and acceptable. And that's what you don't understand. A car driving on a road is normal.Firing a pistol in your backyard where it could kill a neighbor is not, where a neighbor is raking leaves, is not.

Pointless comparison.

Moving on.

tabbymomma
12
Points
tabbymomma 02/09/11 - 08:17 pm
0
0
No one is perfect but, we

No one is perfect but, we should be held accountable for our actions. And I don't think anything that is dropped is so important that one should take their eyes off of the road to retrieve it! That was not an accident. That was disregard for safety and common sense. What if that had been your family member? Your son...your dad...your husband...your brother?

Captain Awesome
0
Points
Captain Awesome 02/09/11 - 09:06 pm
0
0
Accidents happen. The truck

Accidents happen. The truck driver who hit a lady crossing the street at MCG because the sun was in his eyes was a tragic accident. But this man was well aware of the train of bikers that regularly road that route, by his house at that time and were plainly visible that the car far behind him could see the bikers and the horrible 'accident.' He changed his story several times and tried to leave the scene. That's no accident.

TrekStoreManager
0
Points
TrekStoreManager 02/09/11 - 09:07 pm
0
0
corgimom- I am not assuming

corgimom- I am not assuming that you have never ridden a bike on a public road, I am assuming that you are not an avid cyclist that understands the lifestyle. If you are then you probably would feel differently. I agree that most everyone has ridden a bike on a public road most of whom did when they were a kid in a neighborhood. But just because "offhand" you can't think of anyone who hasn't doesn't mean that everyone has ridden with traffic. The average person is not aware of the laws cyclist have, why they ride on the road, and what it is like to be out there. This is the person I am speaking of. The reason for my post was not to debate who has ridden on a public road. It was to say that cycling is a growing sport in the area and everyone should be more aware. That goes for drivers and cyclists.

PeaceBWithU
0
Points
PeaceBWithU 02/09/11 - 09:37 pm
0
0
TSM makes such a good point.

TSM makes such a good point. Educating the community on the rules of the road, for both drivers and cyclists, is desperately needed. In addition, putting up some signs on well traveled cycling routes is needed too. I'm sure that if revenue blocked obtaining signs, there would be many in the community willing to participate in fund raisers to make it happen.

athome
95
Points
athome 02/09/11 - 10:49 pm
0
0
Captain awesome: I have not

Captain awesome: I have not read a single account of this accident that said Mr Johnson tried to leave the scene. The stories in October reported that he stopped and immediately tried to assist as he was trained in EMT. That was according to some in the bicycle group.

xrev
0
Points
xrev 02/10/11 - 12:00 am
0
0
Wow!!! NEVER had this kind of

Wow!!! NEVER had this kind of interaction on any topic. NEVER. Ive had hatemail sent to me just because I said ANY of us could have been that driver so show some compassion; his life is ruined too. And yes he could have been more careful, more alert, more whatever.
But I will also tell you road loving cyclists that stuff happens. It doesnt matter who is at fault. You mix a bicycle with an an automobile and the bike loses every time. Forget Mr Johnsons intent . Lets assume you are riding some other day and a car approaches. He sees you riding 3 abreast yet slows down and waits until he can safely pass. What if a tire blew out on his car as he was passing? What if the car driver had a seizure? Or a heart attack and swerved into you? It doesnt matter if the car driver was at fault. The bike loses. Its simple physics. And the roads in Beech Island, I can guarantee when they were graded and paved years ago were NEVER intended for bicycles. Never. You may have the right to ride on those roads. What kind of lame argument is that? I also have the right to waterski in stump infested waters. I have the right to do shots of alcohol until I pass out. I have the right to handle poisonous snakes. I have the right to eat 3 dozen cheeseburgers a day. That right doesnt make it smart. So go ahead and demand your "right" to the highways designed for cars. But that wont make it any smarter.
Mix car with bike and bike loses. Almost every time. And if you have a wife (or husband) and children and insist on riding a bike or even a motorcycle, or skydiving, or bull riding, or racing a car professionally, or whatever risky behavior you fancy: you are increasing risk. Yes this thing could have been averted had Mr Johnson paid more attention. But it also could have been a non incident had that little group exercised their "right" and chosen to ride a stationary bike in a gym. But its really not about exercise , is it? Its about exercising your rights, and then blowing a gasket because the laws of physics and risk eventually get someone killed.

Sean Moores
1059
Points
Sean Moores 02/10/11 - 10:35 am
0
0
I'm closing comment under

I'm closing comment under this story. If you want to post comments on this topic, go to our most recent story.
http://chronicle.augusta.com/news/crime-courts/2011-02-10/driver-gets-bo...

Back to Top

Top headlines

Kettle donations rise in 2014

After a disappointing showing last year, donations to the Salvation Army's local Red Kettle Campaign have risen nearly 20 percent in 2014.
Search Augusta jobs