Cyclist ‘BlackCountryBikeCam’ suffered from an unprovoked, violent road rage attack from the driver of a white van belonging to a Birmingham pet shop. The incident was recorded on a helmetcam and this was shown to police. However, as the driver has no previous convictions and admitted his guilt (when told there was video evidence) West Midlands police advised the cyclist to seek a "local resolution", meaning the driver would not be charged with assault.
The cyclist – CCStev on Twitter – wasn’t happy with this outcome. West Midlands police said their hands were tied with Home Office rules over such incidents.
The video quickly went viral on YouTube but somebody – assumed to be the road rage motorist – asked for YouTube to take video down because it showed "disgusting content." It did, but the content had already been saved by other YouTube users and the video was "mirrored", placed elsewhere on YouTube, making it a pain for the complainer to keep on chasing down copies.
Chris Boardman linked to the latest version of the video and decried the lack of justice when it’s cyclists being assaulted.
The Birmingham pet business – Weird and Wonderful Ltd – had to delete its twitter and Facebook accounts because of a barrage of complaints made against the driver shown in the video. The online contact form on the firm’s website has also been disabled.
BikeBiz.com contacted the business by email to ask whether the driver who committed the assault – seen in the video and stills wearing a company sweatshirt – was still connected with the company and may, perhaps, be one of the company principals? No reply has yet been received.
"The driver was not charged. He was brought in for interview and initially claimed provocation, that I kicked his van and kicked him in the chest. He changed his story when told there was video evidence. He still claimed I kicked him and the van and only after the officer pointed out that she couldn’t see any of that, on his solicitor’s advice he finally accepted full responsibility.
"Because he had no police record and admitted to the offence, under the ridiculous scoring system imposed on the police he was eligible for a caution. As the victim I was given the choice of the driver receiving a caution or I could accept a local resolution, the terms of which that I would receive an amount in compensation and a written apology. I’m far from happy about it but reluctantly accepted the resolution. I don’t think the police are to blame but the decisions made by Government departments that govern them. This was a violent, unprovoked attack that has no place in society and I’m very disappointed and angry that the driver will not face criminal consequences."