Bicyclist Accused of Attack on Driver During Critical Mass Ride Charged with Four Felonies

A bicyclist who allegedly attacked a Zip Car driver with his U-lock during last month’s Critical Mass event was charged today with four felonies, prosecutors said.

Ian Hespelt, 39, of San Francisco has been charged with assault, false imprisonment, vandalism and throwing dangerous objects at a vehicle, according to the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office.

The Aug. 28 attack was captured on video posted to YouTube. The video shows a confrontation between several bicyclists riding against traffic during the group bike ride. As one driver tries to get away from the crowd, one of the bicyclists smashes the side of the car with his bicycle lock.

Police said the Zip Car sustained about $2,000 in damage.

Officers on patrol near Third Street and Terry Francois Boulevard spotted Hespelt, who was riding a bike similar to the one in the video and matched the description of the suspect, police said.

He was arrested and booked into jail. Hespelt is expected to be arraigned on the felony charges at 1:30 p.m. Thursday, prosecutors said.

Scott Morris, Bay City News

Please make sure your comment adheres to our comment policy. If it doesn't, it may be deleted. Repeat violations may cause us to revoke your commenting privileges. No one wants that!
  • salsaman

    I’ve read elsewhere that the incident happened at 8:15PM, long after the parade-like procession has dispersed. At that point it’s not Critical Mass at all, just a bunch of jerks on bikes messing with cars.

    I primarily bike to work and to get around the city, and while lots of drivers demonstrate complete disregard for cyclists’ (and other drivers’) safety, so do many fellow cyclists.

    Come on, people– show a little courtesy and try to communicate.