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October 2nd, 2013
08:58 AM ET

Key piece of evidence in NYC motorcycle attack

A brutal scene caught on video. Police say the driver of an SUV accidentally hit a motorcyclist. But what happened next was no accident. A pack of bikers chased down the driver, smashed his window with a helmet, and beat him in front of his wife and toddler. Randi Kaye has the latest.

Filed under: Randi Kaye
soundoff (51 Responses)
  1. Eleice

    I have watched the video several times, the initial tap was the bikers fault, what followed afterwards I can not say if I would or would not have done the same. What raises a question with me is with all of this going on not one person has said a word about how convenient someone is wearing a helmet camera. Does this not strike anyone as odd?

    October 17, 2013 at 1:17 pm |
    • Matt

      While it may seem weird to have a helmet cam, for sports enthusiasts, racers, action types and more there are portable cameras that are made to catch live action. Look up go pro cameras and you'll see what I mean. Youtube and other sites have tons of videos showing exactly what these guys were doing and it's the new norm.

      October 20, 2013 at 5:37 pm |
  2. Amy

    this whole thing is crazy. i feel like the SUV driver was set up from the begininng. why did the biker slow down to the point of having the suv graze his tire. and there was a whole herd of bikers thats enough to scare the crap out of me.
    I feel bad for those who were injured but if you choose to swarm a car and then stop thats not smart either

    October 5, 2013 at 11:44 pm |
  3. Mike.S

    Garagos is completely ignoring the fact that the cyclist who was run over was illegally stopped. If you stop after an accident, whether you were directly involved or a witness, it's your duty to pull to the side of the road and not block traffic.

    The guy who was run over was part of a mob – and was preventing the completely reasonable escape of the SUV driver, who was legitimately in fear for the safety of himself and his family.

    The guy who was run over was in no way innocent – he made a conscious decision to stop and participate in a mob action. Prior to that, he was a participant in obviously illegal, dangerous, and anti-social activities. Sorry for his pain, but that's simply the consequences of his actions.

    October 3, 2013 at 11:02 pm |
  4. Jim

    Looks to me like the bikers were picking a fight.

    October 3, 2013 at 4:37 pm |
  5. Jorge

    This is pretty much an everyday thing in the Philippines. But judging by the video, I think it's the fault of the motorcyclist in front. I mean, if he was doing a brake check, why do it in front of an SUV?! Honestly, you're a lot safer in an SUV than in a motorcycle. Plus the driver had his wife and kids with him in the SUV, he would be of course worried for their safety. Come on, there's around 50+ bikers in the video. And I'm sure he has heard of Sons of Anarchy, so he completely acted out of self-defense.

    Of course, I wish the best that Jay Meezee recovers well and hope that he learns from this.

    October 3, 2013 at 4:44 am |
  6. Christopher D.

    I have watched the video quite a few times and have been following the story closely from multiple sources. Almost nobody knows what happened before the video started rolling but there is irrefutable evidence that the initial biker "brake checked" the driver of the SUV for whatever reason. This in turn escalated into a true tragedy where multiple persons were injured, one of which remains in critical condition (and my condolences do go out to him and his family).

    The fact of the matter is however, that who started it and who is to blame for the initial incident is irrelevant. If the SUV driver did in fact hit a biker (who was not injured or even knocked off his bike), what the bikers should have done was immediately phoned the police to report the incident with the license plate of the SUV. There were plenty of witnesses there to gather at least that information. Instead, the group of motor cyclists took the law into there own hands to apprehend, question, or whatever it was they were trying to do to the SUV driver. The driver did what he probably thought was the right thing to do in a situation where he is surrounded by upwards of 50 upset bikers surrounding his family and trying to open his car door for whatever reason. Sadly, all of the actual injuries could have been avoided had the biker that was struck just called the police to report a hit and run, even if it was his own fault.

    All that being said, I would have done the exact same thing as the SUV driver if I felt that myself and my family were in danger.

    October 2, 2013 at 9:21 pm |
    • Linda

      Agreed! I too have watched the video!

      October 2, 2013 at 10:47 pm |
    • Bonnie

      You worded it perfectly. I would've done the same exact thing out of fear for my family. I don't agree with the motorcycles weaving in and out of traffic or hitting their brakes so suddenly in front of the SUV driver. Then surrounding his car like that would incite fear in any person.

      October 3, 2013 at 12:18 pm |
    • Patty

      " It's against the law to take the law into your own hands." Barney Fife.

      October 6, 2013 at 1:50 am |
  7. Jason

    I don't understand why by law motorbikes are allowed to share lanes, this facility plays a huge role in making most bike riders feel exclusive and maneuvering in ways that are dangerous for themselves and others sharing the roads. Anyone who drives must have witness bikers cutting lanes from left and right, not to mention sharing lanes like dare devils with cars on freeways. If accident happens its the car drivers who is supposed to watch out for these crazy riders.

    I don't see any sensible reason and justification for this so how come no one talks about ending this practice?

    October 2, 2013 at 8:59 pm |
  8. Rich

    I would have definitely yielded to this group of thugs and hopefully they would go about their business and leave me alone. However, if someone crashes my window in with a helmet, I would fear for my safety and my handgun would be used for my protection.

    October 2, 2013 at 8:55 pm |
  9. Brenda

    What was the key evidence? Less info here than what has been reported elsewhere.

    October 2, 2013 at 8:20 pm |
  10. Suzi

    The guy got hit becase of the actions of the gang bikers, they were the ones that stopped to terrorize the driver of the SUV..That driver did what he could to protect his family..The bikers are the reason this guy got hit by the SUV...not him

    October 2, 2013 at 6:56 pm |
  11. Renee Michelle Christian

    Hi Anderson:

    My take on this according to the video is that the initial bump to the back of the motorcycle tire was an accident by the SUV but seemingly the motorcyclist instigated it as it appears he intentionally slowed down because even prior to the bump he is already looking back at the SUV. No harm no fowl really but it excels when the motorcyclist chase the SUV and further instigate fear for him and his family. Understandably someone was severely hurt when the SUV ran them over in an attempt to elude the terror of the gang surrounding. Motorocyclist have a tendency to think they rule the road when in numbers. I've been in traffic situations and have personally experienced their superoptism attitude.

    October 2, 2013 at 6:20 pm |
  12. alex lamerato

    maybe he shouldn't have ran them over uh???????? i mean they don't have the right to beat him but he doesn't have the right to run them over just because they were being stupid while driving on the highway.

    October 2, 2013 at 5:04 pm |
    • Jen

      He had the right to try to get away from an angry mob who could potentially hurt him and his family

      October 2, 2013 at 11:11 pm |
      • Damian Smith

        I agree with Jen.......there is no way especially with a child in the car I would just sit there while 50 or more angry bikers started thrashing in the vehicle..........sorry but I'm putting pedal to metal and if you are in the way so be it.

        October 7, 2013 at 1:01 pm |
    • Vu Dao

      Alex, so you don't have a right to say anything because you were not in that situation. Think about what will you do in that case.

      October 6, 2013 at 1:33 am |
  13. THERESA

    This man in the SUV was scared for the safety of his wife and child and i"m sure did not realize he had run this man over . I can only image how terrified this 2 year old little girl was seeing her father being beaten and men trying to break the window in the back seat where this child was clearly sitting . I feel for the family of the motorcycle driver but the actions of himself and the other men caused the horrific event .

    October 2, 2013 at 4:56 pm |
  14. Aniq Salaam

    The bikers have been totally misrepresented in the media. There is no way in hell that the driver should not face any charges for running down a human being and paralyzing him. Just as the bikers are being charged so should he. Common sense should have told him to move over and let them go since there were so many of them. And if he was so concerned for the safety of his family that should have been more of a reason for him to pull over to the side. Two wrongs don't make a right but he also should be held accountable for his actions.

    October 2, 2013 at 4:16 pm |
    • Jesse Balk

      Let me see SUV guy hit a motorcycle in the rear. As far as I know the guy that hits you in the rear IS ALWAYS at fault. Moving on . . . . he then runs over several other cyclists in such a manner as to raise the front of his SUV several feet off the asphalt and then NEVER STOPS. Doesn't that equate to a CRIME? If you saw several of your friends purposefully run over by a criminal using his SUV as a weapon wouldn't you chase the guy down? It obviously is not right to take justice into your own hands but that was certainly what was happening, terrorized cyclists seeking justice.

      October 2, 2013 at 9:28 pm |
    • Sonya

      Pull over and what? Let them beat him to a pulp? They were asking for trouble and they got it.

      October 2, 2013 at 9:35 pm |
    • Jen

      And how was he supposd to pull over to let them pass when they surrounded him??

      October 2, 2013 at 11:14 pm |
      • Jeff

        He should have never bumped the guy. He could have slowed down and let them pass as the guy on the bike was trying to get him to do. This ride happens every year, according to the police, and people know this but yet and still they insist on riding through the bikers. Just let them pass and you will not have any troubles.

        October 4, 2013 at 5:37 pm |
        • Janet

          Maybe we didn't watch the same video. I saw an SUV in his lane doing a steady speed being PASSED by motorcycles on either side and in his lane, with no respect of lane markings or traffic laws. One lane = one vehicle.

          If those bikers had obeyed traffic markings, ridden one to a lane, there would have been no problem, no accident, no injuries....they were riding in a mob and acting as a mob and put that child in the car in danger.

          Once they dented his SUV and, as police indicated, slashed his tires, he had every reason to believe he and his family were in mortal danger and he should be able to use deadly force against the mob to get away. What parent wouldn't ?

          I do hope the injured biker recovers but no charges should be filed against the SUV driver.

          October 5, 2013 at 12:05 am |
        • ken

          This ride happens every year, according to the police, and people know this but yet and still they insist on riding through the bikers. Just let them pass and you will not have any trouble... Really now?

          So if I'm new to town and didn't know about the ride, it's my fault and I deserve punishment for not pulling to the side of the road to let the rider lords through? And if they decide to ride everyday, I shouldn't ever go on the freeway, otherwise it's my fault?

          Sorry to tell ya, but this is not the middle ages anymore.

          October 6, 2013 at 4:35 am |
        • Laney

          If it happens every year, why not block and close off all the roads? He only accidentally bumped the guy because the "guy" braked in front of him. (As clearly seem in the video.) As for driving his SUV at the same time with motorcyclist, it's not a crime. Cars, trucks, etc share the road with them. The motorcyclists were at fault.

          October 7, 2013 at 4:55 am |
    • lula

      I didn't see a single thing that the bikers did right.

      October 22, 2013 at 11:05 am |
  15. Jackie G.

    You know what CNN? While I do not condone at all what the men on the motorcycle did in retaliation, I feel it is shameful of you to leave out key facts in your blurb (which some may read without watching the video). Yes, the driver accidentally hit one biker, but he also RAN OVER several. You also left out that he was not seriously injured, yet one of the bikers is paralyzed and cannot breathe on his own. SERIOUSLY? Is this the type of journalism you have succumbed to?

    October 2, 2013 at 4:14 pm |
  16. Jordan

    That is just ridiculous. Those bikers acted like they own the road. Injured a man and put his wife and kid in danger. Shame on them.

    October 2, 2013 at 4:10 pm |
    • Jeff

      Look at the video again. The SUV had plenty of time to stop and avoid hitting the bike. if he had done that and let the bikers pass, his family would not have been in any danger at all. But because he hit the biker, the results are what they are....terrible all around.

      October 4, 2013 at 5:41 pm |
      • Laney

        You mean the part where the motorcyclist drives in front of the SUV and quickly brakes while staring backwards at the SUV?

        October 7, 2013 at 5:02 am |
      • brad

        The biker illegally entered the SUV's lane while appearing to yell something at the driver, then passed closely in front of the SUV (not the required distance for passing) and slammed his breaks on. He *caused* the accident, and you can see as he was looking back to the SUV that it was deliberate.

        What happened before that? I have no clue, but I am guessing nothing other than the SUV was driving down the road like normal and the bikers didn't like that he wasn't getting out of their way, which isn't required.

        October 15, 2013 at 12:35 pm |
  17. Dee

    I have watched this video several times. The driver of the SUV was set up to have an accident, then his vehicle was attacked on three separate occasions. Under those circumstances what person wouldn't fear for their life and the lives of their wife and child?

    While it's too bad some bikers were injured (I'll give them the benefit of the doubt that maybe not all the bikers were on the attack) that is the risk you take when you choose to ride with others willing to do these sorts of things. My daddy always told me "you fly with the crows, you're going to get shot at". If you are the kind of motorcyclist who doesn't want trouble then I suggest you don't ride with those who do. The driver of the SUV was well within his rights to do all he could to protect his welfare and the welfare of his wife and child.

    Quite frankly the bikers can be thankful the driver of the SUV didn't back up over a bunch of them on the third occasion when they had him cornered in traffic. He had every reason to be fearful for his life and the lives of his wife and child and could have attempted to escape again.

    Personally it would be a frosty Friday I would just sit there as someone bashed in my driver's window and ripped open the door and hatch! Forward reverse forward reverse etc. I would not go down without one heck of a fight and if more bikers got hurt in the process then so be it, I have the right and responsibility to do all I can to protect my life and those of my loved ones. If you don't want to get hurt don't set up a situation and make someone fear for their life! People are allowed to protect themselves. Luckily the driver of the SUV wasn't killed during his beating. Based upon all that happened up to that point he had no way to know he would survive the encounter. No way should the SUV driver be charged with anything. My heart goes out to those in the SUV and the unimaginable terror they must have experienced.

    October 2, 2013 at 2:19 pm |
    • Linda

      Very nicely stated!

      October 2, 2013 at 10:53 pm |
    • Jeff

      JUST DON'T TRY TO RIDE THROUGH A PACK OF BIKERS. This video shows the SUV hitting the biker. The biker has the right to slow down. The SUV driver has the responsibility to maintain his vehicle. What needs to be told are all the things pre-video. Once that is put out, I think a lot of the people here will rethink their opinion on both sides.

      October 4, 2013 at 5:46 pm |
      • chris

        The video also shows a pack of bikers attacking the SUV if I had my kid in the car you can bet I would run your butt over too.
        The wefare of my family will come first every time!

        October 5, 2013 at 12:32 am |
      • Ken Denning

        Jeff,

        I don't think many are buying your rhetoric on here. Most people with common sense can read through the lines. The fact is, no one should take the law into their own hands like some of the bikers did. They continued to stalk the SUV instead of letting the police handle the situation. The fact that a few became the aggressors in this situation puts them in the wrong. Given the circumstances that was shown on the video, if the biker with the helmet came at me with any object that I construed to be a deadly weapon, I would have shot him dead we're he stood. I do feel bad to all that we're hurt, but you simply cannot take the law into your own hands unless you are in eminent danger of life and limb and are protecting yourself.

        October 5, 2013 at 8:46 am |
      • Bryan

        The bike rider does not have the righ to stop in a traffic lane and impede the movement of traffic for no apparent reason. The maneuver he pulled is the swoop and squat, used frequently by criminals who try to create a minor accident and then assault/rob the motorist who was forced to stop. The SUV rider does not have to let the pack stay in formation as long as he is driving in a safe manner.

        The bottom line is that the motorcyclists swarmed the SUV, the lead bike dared the SUV to hit him and got what he deserved. If this had happened in the south, there would have been several bikers that would have been shot the moment they started trying to force their way into the SUV.

        October 5, 2013 at 3:59 pm |
      • Dan

        Completely missing the facts of the video provided by the motorcyclist themselves. View the video and notice how the motorcycles are gaining ground and over taking the SUV. Doesn't seem to me like he chose to "ride through a pack of bikers" so much as the bikers chose to speed around every side of this SUV and then Cruz cuts over into the SUV's lane and purposefully hits the brakes. And every one who drives should know how to give proper following distance, signaling, and respect to each other. Clearly Cruz had a different mentality when taking the purposeful action of pulling up past the SUV, hoping lanes, and then deliberately breaking in front of the SUV. That is wreckless driving not what the SUV was doing. Most cases if you are rear ended it is assumed the driver who struck the other vehicle form behind is at fault, but thanks to this video we don't have to make assumptions. The video spells it out black and white.

        October 7, 2013 at 12:18 pm |
      • Edward

        The biker was not paying attention when we turned to look for his friend. The act of looking over your left shoulder can pull on the right hand, which decreases throttle. This is exactly what the biker does, and is a clear sign of an inexperienced rider. He knew what position he was in when he pulled in front of the Rover, but I don't think he realized his turning motion would cause him to throttle back into the vehicle behind him. The military requires all riders to attend motorcycle safety courses, and awareness is taught on DAY ONE. Be aware of your surroundings, keep your hands in range of your brakes, and always be mindful of the throttle. On sport bikes, 40 MPH can instantly turn into 60, and vice-versa. Bottom line, the biker is at fault for poor situational awareness. I am curious to know how long he's been riding, and what safety courses he's passed (just because you take one doesn't mean you learn anything).

        October 7, 2013 at 4:16 pm |
  18. Trent

    While the injured biker deserves public empathy for the physical trauma he experienced, it is evident that he brought it on himself. Ganging up, threatening and endangering others in public may satisfy one's ego and give him boasting rights in bars and in front of homies, that action is criminal and deserves severe punishment by law, not to mention the danger the action may inflict on himself.

    October 2, 2013 at 12:37 pm |
  19. Grant T.

    I have been in this situation back 4 years ago in Brooklyn, NY. I was driving my van with my girl friend sitting next to me and 3 passengers sitting on the back seat. Next thing i know being suddenly surrounded by about 30 bikers. For some reason they started playing with me and wave their hands. Few bikers in front of me tried to cause an accident but I avoided a collision, situation was getting worse. They made me stop the car and started attacking on my car just like the are doing this video. I happened to escape whit out injuring anyone making a U turn on Ocean Parkway and Ave M area. I hit the curb and flattened my right tire. They had 2 SUV's escorting them who blocked me right on Ave M & Ocean Parkway intersection which i could not avoid anymore. I no other choice but stop the car before I hit that car. This time bikers acted faster, they started breaking my "drivers" window and windshield. The broke into it and pulled me out and aggressively attacked me, I was on the ground being assaulted........ I could not do anything anymore at that point but pray....... I heard sirens, thanks God i am still alive......
    I know how it feel being attacked by dozens of wired looking bikers, some of them wearing masks to match with their outfit....
    Driver of Range Rover on this video did exactly what appeared to be the ONE and ONLY solution to save life of 3 or even his own.

    October 2, 2013 at 11:48 am |
    • Adrian

      Did that really happen?, What was the motive?

      October 2, 2013 at 10:28 pm |
  20. Bernardo

    God bless the SUV driver. Police should try to identify and arrest all these bikers. I can only imagine how scared the SUV family should have been.

    October 2, 2013 at 11:09 am |
  21. Name*nanette

    Really? IM 63 YEARS OLD. Looks like to me suv guy got impatient hit a KID on a motorcycle. Never stopped to see if the KID needed help. (HIT AND RUN) Then ran over two two more KIDS and again left ( hit and run.) After hearing suv guy was is part of the police department I get why hes not being charged. This is terrible. He could have stopped and used his cell phone to call the police. Where is his training? ITS A CHILD WHO MAY DIE BECAUSE SUV GUY LOST HIS PATIENCE. ITS SO TIPICAL OF THAT AGE GROUP MEN I SEE THIS BEHAVIOR ON THE ROADS ALL THE TIME.

    October 2, 2013 at 10:39 am |
    • Jen

      I think you need to watch that video again

      October 2, 2013 at 11:19 pm |
    • Maura

      Uh, I don't think impatience was at play, probably something more like "panic" and primal fear for his family's safety; no doubt a survival sense kicked-in. My God, why do those with so little grasp of reality feel so sure of themselves? He did call 911. Too much self-esteem, too little real life experience. Listen to the poster above you who was attacked in similar fashion. THAT's the kind of person qualified to opine and bring something to the discussion. Sounds like you're just ticked-off at men. And cops. And a "child" was in the SUV, the thug from Lowell, MA., never had any kind of license in that State, was an habitual traffic offender whose driving privileges were revoked until 2017.

      October 3, 2013 at 4:10 pm |
    • chris

      I did not see any KIDS in the video, and I am 55 years old and ride every day to work(and follow the driving laws) and to me it looked like the SUV was being attacked buy people older then 21 so they are not KIDS.
      Please look at the video again and this time read the story that comes with the video!
      The SUV driver is not part of the police department I do not know were you got that story from?

      October 5, 2013 at 12:56 am |

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