It's been 39 days since a hit-and-run driver killed cyclist Rick Beard, a 54-year-old, safety-conscious biking enthusiast.
The biking advocates at St. Louis Bicycle Works know exactly how many days it's been. For every day that passes without charges filed against the person who turned himself in to police in connection with Beard's death, the group tweets to the Circuit Attorney Jennifer Joyce, pressuring her to take action and reminding her that they're watching.
35 days and still no charges announced against hit and run fatality. Circuit Attorneys office is saying to just hold on....................— STL Bicycle Works (@StlBicycleWorks) July 24, 2014
The delay is particularly frustrating to cycling enthusiasts -- many of whom have their own horror stories of being hit or almost hit by a car -- because Beard's bike had a working camera that recorded what happened after he rolled through a stop sign around 8:45 p.m. on June 20 at Sarah Street and Cook Avenue.
31 days and still no charges against the driver that hit, killed local cyclist. @JenniferJoyceCA— STL Bicycle Works (@StlBicycleWorks) July 22, 2014
If Beard recorded his own death, cyclists around the city are asking, why hasn't the Circuit Attorney filed charges against the 27-year-old man who surrendered to police a week later?
Susan Ryan, spokeswoman for the Circuit Attorney's Office, doesn't offer any concrete clues, but says her office and the St. Louis Metropolitan Police are still actively investigating the hit-and-run and that there's more evidence to collect before filing charges.
"Police are doing accident reconstruction, seeking as much evidence as they possibly can," Ryan tells Daily RFT. "As soon as they bring over sufficient evidence for us to charge this case, we will."
.@StlBicycleWorks No matter how tragic the case, we don't file charges based on days elapsed, we file them based on evidence.— Jennifer M. Joyce (@JenniferJoyceCA) July 25, 2014
.@StlBicycleWorks As you are aware, this matter is still under investigation.— Jennifer M. Joyce (@JenniferJoyceCA) July 25, 2014
UPDATE: Here's the full police report from the incident:
Incident: Fatal Accident/Leaving the Scene
Location: Cook & Sarah
Date/Time: 06/20/14 @ 2047Victim: Charles Beard, a 54-year old white male of the 7900 block of Davis Dr. in Clayton, Mo
Suspect vehicle: 2006 Pontiac Grand Prix - Black with maroon paint
The victim was riding his bicycle traveling north on Sarah at the intersection of Cook. As the victim proceeded through the intersection, he was struck by the above described vehicle. The vehicle fled the scene at a high rate of speed. The victim was pronounced deceased on the scene. On 6/21, the suspect vehicle was recovered in the 4700 block of Kensington. The investigation is ongoing.
Support Local Journalism.
Join the Riverfront Times Press Club
Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.
Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.
Join the Riverfront Times Club for as little as $5 a month.