Still No Charges in Death of Wellesley Cyclist

wellesleyThe location of the accident via Google Maps.

It’s been 10 days, and still no charges against a driver who hit and killed a cyclist on Weston Road in Wellesley, then drove away. Police have located and interviewed the driver, who reportedly was driving a truck, and hit the cyclist, 41-year-old Alexander Motsenigos, the father of a 6-year-old boy. Motsenigos was cycling near town center at the time of the accident.

It’s perplexing that two people could be traveling side-by-side on the same street at the same time, and one could end up killed while the other drives away unaware. Suburban streets are not Thunderdome; there has to be some accountability. I find it hard to believe that the driver didn’t hear anything, feel anything, or look in his rear-view mirror and see what had happened. From pictures in the media, it looks like the street was littered with wreckage.

If such a thing happened between a truck and a motorcycle or a truck and a moped, it’s probably unlikely it would take police so long to file charges. Yes, bicycling is quiet, and bike frames are light—for many of us, that’s the point—but it doesn’t change the fact that everyone needs to be aware and careful when sharing the road. No vehicle type has primacy out there, and just because a vehicle is big doesn’t mean it has the right-of-way.

Many cyclists assume we can’t be seen by cars, which, like defensive driving, is something we do for safety. But getting caught in an unsafe situation—my guess is Motsenigos got squeezed against the curb then had nowhere to go (a friend is in a coma after a similar strike)—shouldn’t be paid for in blood. Wellesley police need to realize that either the road isn’t safe (admitting that could make the town partially liable) or the driver wasn’t operating his vehicle in a safe way. The case is complicated, but the outcome is anything but: A 41-year-old man is dead and nothing has been done.