Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Ghostbike memorial for David Salovesh | 12th Street and Florida Avenue NE DC

From a DC Police report: Detectives with the Metropolitan Police Department’s Major Crash Investigations Unit are investigating a traffic fatality that occurred on Friday, April 19, 2019, in the intersection of 12th Street and Florida Avenue NE, Washington DC. At approximately 10:00 a.m., an automated license plate reader alerted that there was a stolen white van in the area of Benning Road NE. Metropolitan Police Department Fifth District officers saw the stolen van near the area of Benning Road and Florida Ave NE and attempted to stop the vehicle. The driver refused to stop for the officers and fled the area. A short time later, officers from the Fifth District discovered the driver of the stolen van was involved in a traffic crash at the intersection of 12th Street and Florida Avenue NE. The preliminary investigation into this crash revealed that the driver of the stolen van was speeding, while traveling westbound on Florida Avenue NE. When the driver reached the intersection of 12th Street and Florida Avenue NE, he failed to stop at the red light and struck a blue Hyundai that was traveling South on 12th Street NE. The driver of the stolen van then proceeded to travel westbound on Florida Avenue NE, crossing over the double yellow lines, striking an adult male cyclist following the flow of traffic in an eastbound lanes of Florida Avenue NE. The driver of the stolen vehicle then struck a tree. MPD officers arrived on the scene shortly after the traffic crash and placed the driver of the stolen van under arrest. The driver of the striking vehicle was transported to a local hospital for non-life threatening injuries. The driver of the blue Hyundai did not sustain any injuries. The adult male cyclist showed no signs consistent with life and was pronounced dead on the scene. The decedent has been identified as David Salovesh, 54, of Northeast, DC. On Friday, April 19, 2019, Robert Earl Little, Jr, 25, of Northwest, DC was arrested and charged with Second Degree Murder and Unauthorized Use of a Motor Vehicle.

Mr Salovesh was a leader in the local cycling community and was well loved and respected. I spoke to one of his friends at the shrine site. He came to pay his respects. He said "he was the best. He was so much better than most of us." There is a lot of material on his life and on the reaction to his death,  plus the the activism regarding safety undertaken by the local cycling community of which he was a part. See these two articles in the Washington Post. Article one here. Article two here.


John Salovesh said...

Thank you for presenting stark visualization of Dave's ghost bike

Rachel said...

John - I am SO sorry for your loss. Dave was part friend/part inspiration to me. Wherever you are, I hope you are feeling the support of the community Dave left behind. May his memory be a blessing, and his tactics continue to inspire.