This afternoon I witnessed a pedestrian get hit on Brickell Avenue and SW 14th Street.  As I was crossing with about 10 other pedestrians (we had the right of way with crosswalk signaling “Walk”) from the East to West side of Brickell Avenue in the south crosswalk.  A driver was attempting to turn left (south) onto Brickell from SW 14th Street. I watched in disbelief as the she turned and hit a pedestrian about 5 feet in front of me. She literally tried to “thread the needle” between the sea of pedestrians that were trying to cross the street.

I instinctively kicked her door in an attempt to warn her that she had just hit a pedestrian (I wasn’t sure if she realized she had just hit someone).  I admittedly lost my temper and started yelling at her as well.  I was in complete disbelief that she did not yield. I’m not sure how she could have missed all the pedestrians that were crossing. The guy she hit was about 6’2” and luckily for him he was OK. Here’s were the story gets interesting…

About 10 seconds after the pedestrian was hit a City of Miami Police officer (will remain nameless) pulls up and asks me for my ID and he told me I could be arrested because I was causing a disturbance. I told the officer that a car had just hit a pedestrian and then he proceeds to ask the pedestrian that was hit for his ID. I don’t think he ever asked the driver for her ID.

The pedestrian that was hit said he was OK and did not want to file an accident report. I asked the officer if he would issue a ticket for “failure to yield to a pedestrian” and he said, “No, I didn’t witness the accident.” I pointed out to him that there were 5 witnesses still at the scene, but he refused and he proceeded to threaten to charge me with Road Rage. There is clearly no will to enforce “failure to yield to pedestrian violations” even when there are witnesses. Very sad.

Did I overreact?  Probably, but at the end of the day there is no enforcement on Brickell Avenue for this type of infraction and I’m kind of tired of it. I see this crap day in and day out and nothing is being done to make things safer for pedestrians. This officer had no desire to investigate the accident any further or to file an accident report.

You can see video from this very same intersection which I posted a few months ago where hours before a cyclist was hit by a car. It’s just a matter of time before someone else gets hit here.

 

23 Responses to Pedestrian Hit on Brickell, Multiple Witnesses; Officer Refuses to Issue Ticket for “Failure to Yield to Pedestrian”

  1. Brandt says:

    That’s absolutely ridiculous. That’s the first time I’ve ever heard of a pedestrian being threatened to be charged with road rage.

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  2. John says:

    If you witnessed this and you feel the officer failed to take appropriate action then file a complaint with the police departments Internal Affairs department or civilian review panel.

    Blogging about your outrage of what you witnessed makes you part of the problem, not part of the solution.

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  3. Cody says:

    You did not overreact at all. Honestly, I’m so tired of this crap, it infuriates me! Between our incompetent police force that has no respect for human lives. We literally have people getting hit crossing the street and riding bikes around the city and the city has done NOTHING about it.

    No public campaigns, no increased enforcement, no new crosswalks, no new bike lanes, nothing. I’m sick and tired of it. ENOUGH!

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  4. JJJ says:

    I agree with John, file a complaint with the department.

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  5. Brad K. says:

    Do what you have to, but the bottom line is that MPD cares more about parking and the flow of cars up to Broward more than they care about residents, voters and taxpayers in our neighborhoods. That is why the relationship between the Police and the community has deteriorated over the past two years. Please give us some respect, after all we are the ones who pay your salary year after year, not the AA Arena!

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  6. Felipe Azenha says:

    John,

    Not sure how blogging makes me part of the problem. Please explain.

    I think we here at Transit Miami have made a difference in our community. On the contrary, we are part of the solution. BTW we don’t just blog, we actually attend meetings and meet with our elected officials. Trust me when I tell you that officials from the County, City and State read Transit Miami.

    I will most likely take your advice and file a complaint. Hopefully someone from the Mayor’s office can help since I’m not even sure who’s in charge of the MPD anymore. The fiasco with the Mayor and the Police chief went on for way too long and cost the city to many $$$.

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  7. Peter says:

    Miami Police seemed so biased against pedestrians and bicyclists that they’re neglecting to enforce some laws that keep the peace between people. Police did not ticket the motorist last week in a similar collision in Coconut Grove caused by a failure to yield to bicycle which had right of way. Enforcing laws when people assault others with cars is more important than gambling freedoms!

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  8. Craig Chester says:

    Excellent reporting as usual Felipe. We are creating awareness and making our voices heard, and must demand that our officials and police reciprocate and show improvement to this most basic of quality-of-life issue in OUR city.

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  9. John says:

    wow. you can be arrested for anything in the US. You yell and you can be arrested for causing a disturbance? pathetic.

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  10. Mark says:

    Contact the City of Miami Police Neighborhood Resource Officer for Brickell or the Police commander for the area. This is the type of event they are there for, http://www.miamigov.com/nets/pages/AboutNET/Contact%20us.asp#Downtown

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  11. B says:

    Didn’t witness the accident, eh? I guess an Officer can’t give you a ticket if you run a red light and cause an accident in the process, with half a dozen witnesses?? Poor excuse for lazy law enforcement!

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  12. Andrew Georgiadis says:

    Matches my sentiments exactly, Felipe. One time I report a driver to a Miami police officer for almost having run me and two neighbors over. The police chastised me for provoking the driver and crossin when I had the walk signal, saying that I should have waited if the driver seemed to be in a hurry! This convinces me of the inept, unprofessional police force that is callous to pedestrians and cyclists and only wants to help people drive fast. They need to be reformed.

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  13. Andrew Georgiadis says:

    I also witnessed a friend get ticketed for jaywalking at an intersection as a string of cars illegally cut off pedestrians who were lawfully crossing a crosswalk. Once again, our biased, police force (who are more like bullies toward pedestrians) than fair enforcers of traffic law. Shame on the police!

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  14. John D says:

    First of all the first John to comment has it backwards. If anyone is part of the problem it is the pedestrian who didn’t file a complaint.

    Felipe on the other hand is letting people know what happened which is the only way to make long term changes.

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  15. Daniel says:

    I remember reading once earlier this year in a (reputable, not MNT) newspaper article about the traffic on Brickell saying that it was bad although allegedly “no one has been recently hit”. This must be their way of keeping it covered up, basically by making it more dangerous they make it look safer by not reporting incidents.

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  16. Fernando says:

    Well today I read in the news that 3 City of Miami Police Officers were hit by a car while patrolling on their police bikes on US-1 and 27 Ave. I wonder if they wrote the vehicle that hit them a ticket. Karma?

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  17. Ed says:

    Incidents like this are why I plan to retire somewhere other than Florida.

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  18. M says:

    In somewhat related news, a bicyclist was hit by a car and badly injured on Monday. It happened at Alton Road and 17th Street in Miami Beach. This, in my opinion, is another example of a badly designed road in a heavily populated area that’s popular with pedestrians and bikers.

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  19. miamiman says:

    Man, recently cops in South Florida are like, seriously stressed. Protect and serve, my ass. More like, work 20 years, get my pension and f-you all.

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  20. Nole Joe says:

    Florida leads the nation in pedestrian deaths but they’re not interested in doing the paperwork apparently. They’d rather write tickets that don’t involve getting deposed.

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  21. CB says:

    I agree with John D’s recommendation to file a complaint but NOT with his comment that blogging about the hostile pedestrian & cyclist environment in Miami is “part of the problem.” Raising awareness, reporting on problems & incidents like this and fostering a discussion in this public forum is absolutely a POSITIVE contribution and fills a huge void in our public discourse. If sustained it will convince elected officials, police, regulators and decision-makers that “deadly streets as usual” are simply unacceptable, and that the pedestrian’s safety is the priority.

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  22. joe says:

    people will complain about law enforcement, due to the fact many indivuals have never step foot in a day of a law enforcement officer shoes. so if you have a an issue just go to intenral affairs. and just for your knownledge the city of miami police has ranked the number 1 police force in the world. going on 21 years now. miami pd force trains everyone around the world . at the end of day brickell has more police officers in there area then overtown, model city, and lil havana these areas need more police actual crimes happen in these areas. everyone can hate all policeman or women but im willing to give my life for you sir without even knowing your name dont forget that sir.

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  23. Miami Urbanist says:

    Joe, we are appreciative. And you may be an exceptionally empathetic police officer. We are grateful for that work. But in the area of pedestrian empathy, I and others feel that it is fair to generalize that there is a lack of empathy in general when it comes to enforcing laws for pedestrian’s use of the streets. This has nothing to do with your willingness to lay down your life in other crisis situations. In fact, your willingness to sacrifice your life for us does not mean that you should be given a carte blanche to ignore mistreatment of pedestrians.

       0 likes

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