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Driver gets murder conviction for running down cyclist

In what could go down as a landmark case, a Chicago motorist was convicted of first-degree murder following the April 26, 1999 death of a bike messenger, according to a report in the Chicago Tribune. After 16 hours of deliberation, a jury in Cook County ruled that Carnell Fitzpatrick deliberately ran down Tom McBride after McBride had cursed at Fitzpatrick following a near-collision. "When you have a three-ton vehicle and maybe a 20-pound bicycle, that is no even match," said assistant state's attorney Lynda Peters following the verdict. George Christensen, a friend and co-worker of

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By VeloNews Interactive

In what could go down as a landmark case, a Chicago motorist was convicted of first-degree murder following the April 26, 1999 death of a bike messenger, according to a report in the Chicago Tribune.

After 16 hours of deliberation, a jury in Cook County ruled that Carnell Fitzpatrick deliberately ran down Tom McBride after McBride had cursed at Fitzpatrick following a near-collision.

“When you have a three-ton vehicle and maybe a 20-pound bicycle, that is no even match,” said assistant state’s attorney Lynda Peters following the verdict.

George Christensen, a friend and co-worker of McBride’s, said he hoped the verdict would send a signal to drivers that “vehicles are murder weapons.” He added that he thought the trial’s outcome would give “bicyclists a little insurance that the law is on their side.”

“It could have happened to any of us,” he said. “We’ve all had these confrontations.”

Click here to see the full Chicago Tribune report.