Man bites dog; allen key sought

In a story that briefly displaced world events for readers on the city’s news and car advertiser websites–world events like the suspension of Pakistan’s constitution or the half-million people flooded from their homes in Mexico–it appears a person on a bicycle retaliated for being cut off by a motorist in Toronto. According to rumour, in Monday’s Globe and Mail and Car Advertiser you will read how he “stabbed” the motorist with an allen key. Alleged Allen Key (not exactly as illustrated) click for actual size

The previous version of the story (see link above) stated the motorist was in hospital with serious injuries. Stay tuned.

UPDATE Monday Nov. 5 2007 as reported in the Globe and Mail and Car Advertiser:

Bike rage ‘going to happen’


November 5, 2007

The stabbing of a motorist last week by a Toronto bicyclist was “a pretty severe action,” but bike rage is an unavoidable consequence of the crowded streets, cycling advocates say.

With “more cyclists and more cars on the roads, it’s going to happen,” Derek Chadbourne, a spokesman for Advocacy for Respect for Cyclists (ARC), said yesterday.

Last Friday morning, near the University of Toronto, an SUV driver was struck in the neck by a metal object wielded by a cyclist allegedly upset at being cut off by the driver as the driver attempted a left turn. The cyclist subsequently fled on foot, leaving his bike near the scene.

In September, a cyclist in Milwaukee, Wis., fired a gun three times at a motorist, wounding him in the shoulder, after the motorist caused him to fall.

“Cyclists, on an hourly basis, face people trying to aim their cars at them, swearing at them, swerving at them, taking them off the road,” fellow ARC spokesman Darren Stehr said.

Still, Mr. Stehr cautioned, cyclists’ responses are usually tame. “The most I hear cyclists do is spitting at the window or something … because the cyclist is starting from a David position since he’s so much smaller than the car.”

Original reports identified the weapon in Friday’s incident as a screwdriver, with one television station describing the wounds as “life-threatening.”

Yesterday, however, police said the unidentified 30-year-old victim, a male, was released from hospital on the weekend and is recovering at home.

“No major arteries were affected,” Sgt. Craig Lewers of Toronto’s 52 Division said. Also, contrary to one newspaper report, the victim was not struck six to seven times, but no more than three, and the weapon, he said, appears to have been “a bicycle tool, maybe an Allen
key” – a wrench sometimes known as a hex-head.

As of yesterday afternoon, no arrest had been made, nor had the cyclist – described as a white goateed male in his late 20s, wearing jeans, a baseball cap and carrying a black courier bag – turned himself in.

“We’re still looking at leads – and who doesn’t show up for work Monday, courier-wise,” Sgt. Lewers said.

Mr. Stehr said that the only other episode he could recall of a similar nature occurred a few years ago in Scarborough. “A cyclist got cut off, he pulled out a sawed-off shotgun and took out the rear-window of the car.”

Cycling advocates, however, have differing opinions on whether the fugitive cyclist should come clean.

Even if police don’t make an arrest “the [cyclist] should take responsibility … and maybe tell his side of the story,” Mr. Stehr said.

“I think it would just go really badly for him,” Mr. Chadbourne said, adding that the likelihood of the cyclist being caught is minimal. He noted that initial reports of the victim’s injuries appear to have been overblown. “It’s not like the guy’s dead.”

“There’s nothing more scary,” Mr. Chadbourne said, “than having your life threatened by a car.”

2 Responses to “Man bites dog; allen key sought”


    [...] is another matter. With Nochiya the emergency comes home. With Nochiya we have would-be cyclists stabbing at motorists with a hex wrench in the streets of [...]


    [...] Guess they liked our post linking Nochiya with the Toronto pedestrian who hexed the face and neck of a driver who came too close to [...]

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