Motorcyclist Who Allegedly Critically Injured Cable Car Operator Charged with Two Felonies

A motorcyclist who allegedly hit and critically injured a cable car operator while riding drunk in San Francisco’s North Beach neighborhood Thursday night has been charged with two felonies, a district attorney’s office spokesman said today.

William Makepeace, 22, was charged with two felony counts of driving under the influence of alcohol causing injury, district attorney’s spokesman Alex Bastian said.

Makepeace is out of custody on $100,000 bail, Bastian said.

He was arrested at about 10:30 p.m. Thursday near the corner of Taylor and Francisco streets after hitting a 50-year-old operator stepping off a cable car, according to police.

The cable car operator suffered a fractured skull and a traumatic brain injury and was taken to San Francisco General Hospital with life-threatening injuries.

Makepeace remained at the crash scene and was arrested, police said.

San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency director of transit operations John Haley commended San Francisco police for the quick work making an arrest in the operator’s injury.

“Our cable car system is a national treasure, but the nearly 150 year old system is challenging and difficult to operate, Haley said in a statement Friday. “Despite these obstacles, our conductors and gripmen venture into mixed traffic conditions while exercising extreme vigilance in protecting their passengers and themselves.”

Scott Morris, Bay City News

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