09/10/2007

Texas bicyclist fatally injured by patrol car

By Cynthia Neff
Star-Telegram

ARLINGTON, Tex. —  A bicyclist died after an Arlington police patrol car struck his bicycle from behind in the 500 block of Cravens Park Drive at 11:16 p.m. Saturday, police said.

Ut Van Ly of Arlington was transported to Medical Center of Arlington by ambulance, then flown by helicopter ambulance to Harris Methodist Hospital in Fort Worth, police said. Ly was pronounced dead at 4:18 a.m. Sunday, police said.

One official report listed his age as 42 and another as 43.

The driver of the patrol car, officer Patrick Yeats, has been with the department for eight years.

He was not on a call and was patrolling when the accident happened, said Lt. Blake Miller, a police spokesman.

"It appears that the officer did not see the pedalcyclist at the time of the wreck," Miller said in an e-mail.

"That road is not a very well-lit area," Miller added Sunday. "It's one of those unfortunate situations where the officer did not have time to react."

Miller did not know how fast Yeats was driving but said that the officer "doesn't appear to be in any violation of traffic laws."

Ly was not wearing a helmet, reflective gear or a light visible to the rear, Miller said. Ly's head was injured after he was knocked off his bicycle and into the roadway, the spokesman added.

Miller said the accident is under investigation. Yeats is on routine paid administrative leave for three days.

Copyright 2007 The Star-Telegram

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