Edward Fornel, 61, was convicted on two misdemeanor counts — reckless driving and brandishing a firearm — in a Hanover, Virginia district court on Tuesday.
On November 12, just miles from the 2015 UCI world road championships race course, Fornel buzzed a group of five cyclists while driving an Chevrolet Tahoe, stopped, and then threatened them with a handgun.
He was arrested two days later and on January 13, was convicted of reckless driving and brandishing a firearm. Fornel, who pleaded “not guilty,” will not face jail time, but is expected to be slapped with fines and probation. He was given a suspended sentence of 60 days and will appeal the guilty verdict.
Stephen Hancock, who was one of the cyclists involved in the November incident, told VeloNews via email, “At the arraignment the judge announced he had a previous business relationship with Fornel but was going to hear the case anyway. … [The attorney said] my concerns about the relationship between the judge and Fornel were unfounded, and it was the judge’s choice to hear the case or not.
“For the moment we’ve made our presence known. … Also, my thanks to all the media, RABA [Richmond Area Bicycling Association] members, and general public who showed up to support our presence in the the courtroom today.”