No more donations please. Thank you
I have an attorney! He will represent me on the appeal, the 4th and 5th citations, and the criminal charge of wanton endangerment 2nd degree.
I chose to ride a bicycle because I had to feed my kids. I could not afford to operate and maintain a car. I had to get to work. No one would help me get to work. My freedom and independence was important to me. To be able to choose how, when, and where I travel. The road was difficult to use. The alternatives even more so. I had to get to work on time. I had to get home in a reasonable amount of time. I was stuck. The bicycle was my salvation. With it I had freedom. Freedom to come and go as I pleased. I learned how to ride it. I learned how to be safe on it. I was forced to learn how to navigate heavy traffic on it. I rode it through the Polar Vortex. I rode it in the rain, snow, heat, and during dangerous storms. I rode my bicycle to support my family. For this Jessamine Co. says I am a criminal.
I really need your help. Please share this far and wide. We will win this. I say "we" because this is our fight.
The rights of road users, who are not cars, has been put into question.
Can you use the road if you are not a car? Do you have the right to be safe? Do you have the right to drive defensively? Are the roads no longer first come first served? Can the bigger, swifter, and more aggresive road user force you to give up your space on the road?
A member of the LAB came out a few months back and road US 27 with me. He said that the shoulder on US 27 is un-rideable. He said you do not put yourself on the right side of a right hand turn lane. That is exactly what Jessamine Co. is ordering me to do.
If Jessamine Co. is so concerned for my safety then why don't they provide me with a quality facility that gives me access to all the business' on US 27? Why force me to ride on even more difficult roads, roads that have the same 55mph speed limit as US 27. Why order me to weave in and out of the traffic lane?
I made the following to help you better understand the statutes in Kentucky.
This isn't over. Not by a long shot.
I took one on the chin for Kentucky cyclists.
My life is officially screwed over.
I lost my job and my home.
Everything I had worked for up to the point of the traffic tickets is gone.
I have nothing to show for all the hard work I put into starting a new life for myself and my children.
The first attorney I had was a local cyclist and he was in over his head. He was ill prepared and not well suited to handle this case. That is why I lost the first 3 traffic tickets.
Steve Magas tried to pull a save and make a good argument for an appeal but the ball was dropped by the first attorney and if I had pursued the appeal the ignorance and prejudice that is prevalent here could have set cycling back 150 years into the past.
I followed Steve's advice and I did my research into the appellate judges and I looked up case history for the most prominent cycling ruling here in KY.
The average person does not understand how the law works or how laws get made. I took my time to review everything I could.
I came to the conclusion that with the way the case was poorly handled and the ignorance about what constitutes safe cycling, I needed to let this one go for the cyclists.
If this had been all about me and if all the mean nasty people were correct, then I would still be pushing forward with an appeal. But I'm not. I'm not willing to potentially ruin it for everyone just to have my day in court.
Am I happy about it? Hell No!!
I am pissed as all get out.
The first attorney isn't a bad person. He is a good person who was doing a favor for a friend. I trusted him.
I learned some valuable lessons from this.
1. The media is about selling newspapers and garnering the most viewers on t.v. but there are good and ethical reporters out there.
2. Just because they ride a bicycle and belong to a cycling club doesn't mean they know what they are doing.
3. Your real friends stay in touch even if you lose the first go round.
4. There is nothing more fun than to ride a bicycle for transportation.
5. There are some really terrific people in Nicholasville and I'm glad to have gotten to know them.
6. There are some real assholes in the Lexington bicycling community.
7. There are some really good people in the Lexington bicycling community and I am grateful to them for sticking up for me.
I'm going back to school and pursuing a law degree.
I will never let this happen to another cyclist again. The buck stops here!
Thank you to everyone who helped me with legal expenses.
Since the majority of you are connected to me through this site I'm keeping it open to update you at the time deemed appropriate by my attorney.
Anything new going on with this case?
The reasons for using the travel lane instead of the shoulder have been mentioned time and time again. I will not waste time repeating them again. If you don't get it, you just don't get it.
So close, only $200 left. Congrats!
Bob: You're talking like no one is allowed to cycle in Jessamine County. It isn't THAT she's using the roadway, it's HOW she's using the roadway. The police, courts, and many from the general public agree that how she's currently using the road is wrong. How does the the definition of "highway" in this statute discriminate anything? It's basically used as a blanket term for all public asphalt and concrete capable of being driven on.
Patrick: Are you saying using a bicycle in the middle of a lane on a road that compliments ten of thousands of cars per day, and where traffic normally stampedes at 55 mph is safer than using a shoulder where practically no cars ever drive, ever? Because if so, explain your reasoning. And you're right. Bicycles aren't motor vehicles, but KRS 189.300 only refers to "vehicles", and KRS 189.010 states that "vehicle" means "All agencies for the transportation of persons or property over or upon the public highways of the Commonwealth; and all vehicles passing over or upon the highways." In other words: Yes Cherokee's bike is a vehicle that is bound to KRS 189.300. While bicycles aren't motorized, they are still subject to many of Kentucky's motor vehicle laws, because they share the same pavement. She should just make her defense about the fact that the statute uses only a male pronoun, and therefore doesn't apply to her! She'd have about the same chance of winning!
Tyler McVeigh: The way "highway" is defined in KRS 189.010 and used in KRS 189.300 allows for the selective enforcement of bicyclists for using any roadway in Kentucky. Saying that he was simply ruling on the "snapshot" of the case before him is a smokescreen by Judge Oliver to justify discrimination against a bicyclists for daring to use a roadway in Jessamine County.
KRS 189.010 (19) (b) specifically lists vehicles NOT considered motor vehicles, which includes "vehicles propelled by muscular power" i.e. bicycles. 186.010 (16) specifically states that low-speed vehicles include only MOTOR vehicles. So no, KY state law does NOT treat bicycles as motor vehicles, or a low-speed vehicle.
ummm Tyler where does KY state law say that a bicycle is considered a MOTOR vehicle? I have not heard of any state law that includes such nonsense. I ride in the right lane, center or left of center, because that IS ABSOLUTELY the safest place to be. The shoulder or gutter absolutely is NOT the safest place to be.
Mr. Shanteau, you are spreading lies. Judge Oliver never said she could only ride on the shoulder. From Kentucky.com: "Judge Oliver decided that, in those instances when the paved shoulder was free of debris, Schill should use the shoulder. Oliver specifically noted that he was ruling on the "snapshot" of each specific case before him. At no time did he say that cyclists have no right to the road; he repeatedly affirmed that they do." Read more here: http://www.kentucky.com/2014/09/19/3437785_woman-charged-for-biking-on-us.html?rh=1#storylink=cpy Kentucky state law treats bicycles as motor vehicles. And State law requires any slow-moving vehicle - that is, a vehicle incapable of reaching the posted speed limit - to move as far to the right as is safely possible. The MIDDLE of the right lane is NOT as far to the right as is safely possible. And you don't have to be a cyclist to figure that out.
Ray Missy: It's a tragedy that all you know about traffic safety you learned from pro-motoring interests, who don't want bicyclists in traffic lanes, only out of the way on dangerous shoulders such as the one on US 27. If KY had decent bicycling education in the elementary schools, perhaps people like you would understand that traffic lanes are not "car lanes" and that bicyclists are legitimate users of traffic lanes.
Cherokee my friend you are almost at the 10k! I'm so proud of you. I told you people are ignorant enough to donate to anything. LOL. Keep fighting the fight girl, you know I have your back. Beep beep beep.
Alex Kirkland: This is not a scam. Cherokee has real expenses defending herself against this bogus persecution. The KY Legislature defines a bicycle as a vehicle and the roadway (traffic lanes) as being the portion of the highway intended for vehicular travel. The Legislature allows, but does not require bicyclists to use the shoulder (off the roadway). The Sheriff's Department, on the other hand, is trying to find a back door way of prohibiting bicyclists from using traffic lanes on US 27, something the Legislature clearly did not intend. Cherokee is being persecuted by the Sheriff's Department. We need to support her, not snipe at her.
This seems very odd. None of the media sources covering the case have made any mention of a crowdfunded appeal process. Think before you donate, is this a scam?
Uhhhh, yeah Ray Missy its all a big conspiracy just to piss you off on your way to work. Honestly, get a friggin' life and have another doughnut, the gout in your feet will help you keep your foot on the gas pedal. Congratulations Cherokee. Please, keep pissing off low life hillbillies as a bonus in standing up for your rights. We...the biking community all over the country are with you one hundred and ten percent. Nice try Ray.
Ray Missy: I don't know where your facts come from, but in her YouTube videos, you can often see the reflection of her blinking headlamp when she is behind a car. I can't assume, but it would make sense that she would also have a rear-facing light as well. I don't agree with her style of riding, her approach to standing up for her cause, nor will I contribute to her defense fund, but I can at least say that she is taking measures to make herself visible from what I have seen.
Ray Missy... Would you like to pay her bus fare every month? The whole situation is that she cannot afford another means of transportation and keep her family off the street. Bikes are VEHICLES and are due access to public roads. As you say, she *WAS* riding without lights etc, but that has been rectified. And the city not having street lights on rural roads is her problem and should prevent her from getting to work? Do you even believe in freedom?? Please, don't answer. I don't need to see more ridiculous attempts at rationalizing the restrictions of someone's personal rights in this country.
Thanks my being my daily inspiration Cherokee! Your troubles are our fight!
I'm fairly sure that most people coming to this site to support Cherokee have enough sense to ignore Ray Missy's red herrings, but I hate to see them sitting there unanswered. The unsuitability of other routes has been discussed here and elsewhere. The phenomenon of local "bikers" not supporting her is a case of no back bone. The whole situation is simply that Cherokee is being denied her legal right to use the roadway in a manner that is safest given the condition of the shoulder and other hazards that arise from "edge riding". Cyclists know these hazards. Non-cycling motorists generally do not. If she was not using lighting and reflectors appropriate for low-light conditions, that would be a violation of vehicle code for which she should have been cited. Was she? Not that I am aware. If the bus service worked for her work schedule, I'm sure she considered using it, but she would not be legally obligated to do so. Cyclists unite in support of Cherokee Shill!
Plus there are other roads that she can take that have a lot less traffic on them. Have you noticed that local bikers are not supporting her because they know the whole situation. If you folks want to give your hard earned money to this woman then have at it.
What you people don't understand is: 1. She was on the road going to work every morning by 4:30 am. 2. She didn't have any lights or reflectors on her bike. 3. She wears dark clothing. 4. She's riding on rural roads (no street lights). So how the heck is anyone suppose to see her when they come around a curve? Jessamine County even started a bus route all the way to and from Lexington after the issue of her riding the bike came up. So she can't say that Jessamine County hasn't tried to work with her to solve this issue. She just wants money and attention, so have at it folks!