BEVERLY HILLS—On July 21, a young Beverly Hills woman pleaded no contest in a hit-and-run accident that critically injured a man who had been riding his bicycle in the West Hollywood area.
The incident occurred on December 1, 2009, near the intersection of Holloway and La Cienega Boulevard around midnight. The defendant, Celine Mahdavi, allegedly left the scene afterward and was later stopped by police at Holloway and Palm Avenue.
The victim, Louis Deliz, formerly a professional bicyclist known as “The Birdman,” had been hospitalized with critical injuries for 49 days, suffering from a coma that lasted for nine days. It is believed that Deliz may not be able to function normally as a result of the accident.
Mahdavi received a sentence of one day in jail, which she served and was subsequently given 36 months of supervised probation. The defendant has a court hearing scheduled for January 18, 2011.
The West Hollywood City Council is currently considering a new plan to promote bicycle safety. The task force is being created to further the city’s efforts to reduce vehicle traffic and congestion and to provide ways for bicyclists to travel safely through West Hollywood and surrounding areas.
A press release at http://www.bikesidela.org/blood-in-ride-and-protest-for-immediate-release/, (written by Bikeside LA President Alex Thompson) reports that a “Blood and Ride” Protest is to take place on July 27 and July 30 at the Beverly Hills Courthouse, where bicyclists will congregate to protest against the sentence Mahdavi received, believing that the sentencing was too light because Deliz had suffered severe injuries. Thompson expressed in the statement that “this sentence is symbolic of the lack of respect cyclists get throughout the justice system.”
The events will take place at 9355 Burton Way, on July 27 at 6:15 p.m., and the second event on July 30, at 8:15 p.m., at the same address.