Alameda County Middle Schooler Assaulted Twice While Cycling Home

This 13 year old boy, entering eighth grade, was riding home from his Alameda County middle school on 8/10/22 at 3:10 pm when was assaulted twice and severely recklessly endangered by two drivers.  It was his first time riding with a camera mounted on the back of his new e-bike so the lens is smudged.  The roads have parked cars on both sides so he has to be careful to avoid getting doored.  There are sharrows on the street marking where cyclists should ride since there are no bike lanes. There are many signs indicating these are school zones.

His middle school has a student population of 1,400. On his way home he also rides past the other middle school with a population of 780.

Please watch his video below and thank him for riding with a camera and helping to make Alameda County streets safer by documenting these egregiously dangerous drivers.  You can leave your comments and thoughts at the bottom of the post.

If you support our work to help create safe, shared streets, please add your thoughts and comments below and donate to help sustain our self-funded organization.

20 Comments

  1. george koster on August 17, 2022 at 6:02 pm

    I hope that someone wrote down the license plate of the Dodge charger racing past the bicyclist so they could be reported to the CHP and local police.
    the Sharrows are nothing but a death trap, most drivers don’t acknowledge that the biker rider has the right to take the full lake to safely ride down the street without being hit from behind.

    • CyclistVideoEvidence on August 17, 2022 at 6:20 pm

      We do have license plates for the Dodge Charger, the kind woman in the pickup, the white sedan that assaulted the 13 year old by hammering the horn, and the kind woman at the end who stopped to check in on the young cyclist.

  2. Kathryn Goursolle on August 17, 2022 at 6:06 pm

    I know exactly where this happened and exactly how the kid was biking from Canyon middle school on his way down Center Street in Castro Valley also passing by Creekside middle school and the Greek Church. I was a teacher in the Castro Valley district for 22 years, a bike commuter there, and know the street and the traffic that you showed. I have been on that street often, and drivers don’t seem to know it is a school zone. Alameda county sheriff dept should be shown this, as well as County Supervisor Nate Miley.

    • CyclistVideoEvidence on August 17, 2022 at 6:17 pm

      Thank you for sharing your experience as a teacher and bike commuter on these same roads. This has been shown to County Supervisor Nate Miley, the Sheriff and CHP. We are working on the case.

      • Jon Spangler on August 17, 2022 at 10:38 pm

        I’m thrilled to hear that Supervisor Miley and law enforcement have seen this video. I suspected that the video was from Castro Valley because I have ridden there and been harassed (as an adult, 60-70-year-old cyclist) and seen the anti-bike and anti-pedestrian attitudes of members of the Municipal Advisory Committee (AKA “the MAC”) up close at several meetings.

        BART has made very little headway with local and county transportation authorities in improving bike and ped access to the CV Station, which has been a major goal system-wide. Much of the opposition comes from the head of the Alameda County Public Works Department administrators.

        • Bruce Dughi on August 18, 2022 at 8:19 am

          I agree that CV MAC should watch this video. Any chance we can get that on the agenda? I doubt it will impact them at all but we need to keep hammering away. They have hearts of stones for cyclists. They will blame cyclist for riding over the sharrows on a road with “Bikes May Use Full Lane” signs.

  3. Doug H on August 17, 2022 at 6:25 pm

    That video paints a sad picture of some motorists. It’s great that this student had a camera – it would be tough to believe how nasty and dangerous some people are to fellow citizens…students! And you have to complement the student on his composure after those incidents.

    It’s very simple. The more motorists realize they’re being recorded the better motorist will behave.

    • Elaine Salinger on August 17, 2022 at 6:57 pm

      I totally agree that motorists will behave better if they know they are being recorded. I’m convinced and will start riding with a camera.

  4. Ri T'a on August 17, 2022 at 6:27 pm

    That’s horribly believable! I ride everyday for the past two years. I’ve had grown men, white men, go out of their way to block the street with their trucks and chase after me. On a recent Sunday early morning, just past the Arena I thought I was going to be dead either by truck or gun. I’m 65 and have to ride an e-bike. Two years ago I was hit by a muscle car who claimed to call the police and took off, leaving me with a fractured spine. I need a camera for my helmet.

    • jnNf_sCO.@ on August 17, 2022 at 6:36 pm

      Hi Ri T’a,

      We spoke a few years ago and were horrified to hear your story about the muscle car. We hope folks in the CVE community will offer to help fund purchasing a camera for your helmet. We will reach out to you to make sure you have a camera.

      Thanks for adding your experience and comments!

  5. Adam Cozzette on August 17, 2022 at 8:13 pm

    Wow, that is outrageous! I admire the toughness of this kid and the kindness of the strangers who offered support.

  6. Stacy Spink on August 17, 2022 at 8:15 pm

    Encouraging to see a young person brave enough to do the right thing. Tough at any age, especially a young teenager. I bike this road EVERY day….

    Anyway, do pass this on to the CV MAC Committee ASAP, which is currently trying to backtrack its position on bike lanes on Somerset and leave 2 static, underused parking lanes, forcing cyclists into the traffic lane. Somerset is THE main road to the only high school in Castro Valley… – Stacy S.

    • Kathryn Goursolle on August 18, 2022 at 8:13 am

      Yes, Somerset needs bike lanes. I have circled it often during my 22 years as a teacher just down the street on San Miguel Avenue. Drivers are extremely rude here and don’t get it that I can take the whole lane. My whole Castro Valley experience has not been super positive. One step they took that I thought was helpful was to add bike lanes on Castro Valley Boulevard. But they do need to extend those lanes all the way up to East Castro Valley Boulevard and all the way west past San Miguel Avenue

  7. JoAnne Lauer on August 17, 2022 at 9:32 pm

    This young person was brave indeed despite the aggressive behavior of people driving weapons made of steel. This is exactly the reason we need bike lanes – on Somerset in the very current discussion, and on Heyer and many other arterials to provide a complete bike lane network for our kids to safely ride their bikes to and from school. If we ever want to make a dent in the only traffic in our unincorporated community – the before and after school traffic – we need to make it safe for kids and all of our community to ride on our streets. Thank you for publicizing this and great to see there were a couple of thinking people out there as well, protecting the young person.

    • Jon Spangler on August 17, 2022 at 10:40 pm

      I agree completely with Joanne Lauer’s comment and Theo other pro-bike commenters with experience riding/living in Castro Valley.

  8. Bruce Dughi on August 18, 2022 at 8:15 am

    Absolutely outrageous and a prime example of the power imbalance between drivers and cyclists (bullying). Also strong argument for separation between cars and bikes (bike lanes). Alameda County Public Works Director, Daniel Woldesenbet (danielw@acpwa.org), keeps arguing that Somerset residents are most affected by parking removal to make way for bike lanes. He absolutely cannot see the trade off in how cyclists are affected by the same decision. This brave cyclist was very negatively impacted by being forced to ride in front of cars. He is a hero!

    We are so lucky he captured the event as I have massive regrets for missing particularly egregious incidents in the past, which is why my family never leaves without at least 1 camera.

    Also lucky the cyclist did not get hurt. This incident brought back some PTS for me. At age 10, my son was hospitalized for 3 nights after a driver ran over him while cycling home from school. It was one of the most emotional/traumatic experiences of my life.

  9. George Burkhard on August 18, 2022 at 9:13 am

    Just watching this video makes my blood boil. I have experienced this all too often on the Peninsula, and have literally had drivers yell at me saying I had to move out of the way, while we are riding/driving over the Sharrows painted right on the street at that very moment. Paint and signs can say what they will, but without police enforcement, people don’t believe that cyclists have as much of a right to use the street as they do (more, actually, since you don’t need to be licensed).

  10. Lanier Benkard on August 19, 2022 at 11:30 am

    I don’t even know what to say about this. It’s infuriating. I can’t even imagine what is going through someone’s head to attack a 13 year old kid on his way home from school like that. I hope that something is done about it.

    • Lanier Benkard on August 19, 2022 at 11:30 am

      I also wanted to thank both the kid, who showed great bravery, and also cyclistvideoevidence for documenting the incident and publicizing it.

  11. Elliot Marshall on December 21, 2023 at 12:05 am

    I hate it when drivers undertake. It gives me one more thing to be constantly terrified about.

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