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Bike hit-and-run victim speaks to ABC7

June 24, 2010 7:41:55 PM PDT
For the first time since four bicyclists were hit and injured by a motorist earlier this month, we have seen and heard from a victim. Alan Casajeros is believed to be the first person struck on the night of June 2.

Three other cyclists were rammed by the same SUV within the next few minutes.

The 39-year-old was returning from the grocery store and was just a few houses away from his own home when the incident happened at 24th and Harrison streets.

"I just remember I flew in the air. That's it." Casajeros is now severely injured. He underwent 19 hours of surgery to fix multiple fractures to his face, skull, and jaw.

He now has numerous bolts and screws holding his face together. His jaw is wired shut, and he's lost several teeth, He spent nearly two weeks in the hospital and now spends most of his time sleeping.

"At day and at nighttime, I can hardly sleep because of all these things. It's really horrible," he said.

Friends say his medical care is being covered by the city's Healthy San Francisco health care program, but his other financial needs are mounting.

"He's gone from being very active to just being able to sleep," the victim's friend Kellie Arechiga said.

He will not be able to return to his job as a server at the Old Clam House for months. His boss and friends are holding a fundraiser for him on Sunday from 3 p.m. until 11 p.m. at the Old Clam House.

The victim tells ABC7, "I know I can still ride my bike" but in reality it's likely to be a long road of physical therapy first. The suspect, 39-year-old David Mark Clark is being held without bail. He has pled not guilty to four counts of attempted murder, four counts of assault with a deadly weapon, and three counts of battery.

Casajeros' attorney believes many motorists don't seem to understand that bicyclists have the same rights under the vehicle code.

"We see cases where people are playing games with the safety of bicyclists and it's not right and unfortunately Mr. Casajeros exemplifies what can go really, really horribly wrong," Claude Wyle said.

Clark's next court date is July 27 when a date will be set for a preliminary hearing.


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