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Motorist Sharlene Simon says that death of 17-year-old Brandon Majeski has caused her "great pain and suffering"...

A woman in Canada who killed a teenage cyclist when she ran into him and two of his friends while driving her sports utility vehicle (SUV) is suing his family for C$1.35 million in damages – claiming that “her enjoyment of life has been and will be lessened.”

The Province reports that the lawsuit alleges that due to the incident in which 17-year-old Brandon Majeski was killed in October 2012, Sharlene Simon “has sustained and will sustain great pain and suffering,” including “a severe shock to her system.”

The lawsuit, filed in December on Ontario Superior Court, also names as defendants two friends of Brandon’s who were with him when he was killed, Richard McLean and Jake Roberts, both aged 16.

Also named is the County of Simcoe, some 50 miles north of Toronto, which is responsible for maintaining Innisfil Beach Road, where the fatal collision took place.

The teenagers were riding three abreast on a rural road as they returned home from a coffee shop at 1.30 in the morning of 28 October when Simons’ Kia Sorrento SUV struck all three from behind.

The impact threw Brandon over the roof of the vehicle and despite the efforts of paramedics at the scene, he died approximately two hours later in hospital.

Of his friends, Jake escaped serious injury, but Richard spent a number of weeks in a hospital in Toronto as a result of the injuries he sustained.

An investigation by the South Simcoe Police Service held that the cyclists’ “lack of visibility… was the largest contributing factor,” and that “the driver of the Kia did not see the cyclists on the roadway and was unable to make an evasive reaction.”

A Crown Prosecutor told police that there was “absolutely no reasonable prospect of conviction and that no charges should be laid.”

Derek Majewski, the victim’s father, said: “My dead son and the boys are being sued by the woman that killed him because she is distraught.

“Normally, I would not react like this, but I think it’s very cruel,” he added.

The family was struck by a second tragedy when Brandon’s elder brother Devon, who had been hit hard by his sibling’s death, died in his sleep as a result of alcohol and pharmaceuticals.

According to the report on The Province, Brandon’s parents have some concerns about the police investigation, and they made a complaint to the Office of the Independent Police Review Director, claiming that the it was biased, because Simon’s husband is also a law enforcement officer, albeit in a different force.

They believe that their son and his friends are being blamed for the crash, because they were riding three abreast, were wearing dark clothing (but with some reflective material), weren’t wearing helmets and only two of the bikes were equipped with what the police termed “minimal reflectors.”

As Majewski put it, “They’re kids; they’re allowed to make a mistake.”

A police report into the incident said that while Simon was driving at around 10kph above the 80kph speed limit, she did not have to take a breath test since there were “no grounds to request” that she do so.

It added however a roadside screening device established that she had “zero alcohol content in her blood system.”

Brandon’s parents, who are no longer together and have new partners, are themselves plaintiffs in a C$900,000 lawsuit against the Simons and Simcoe County.

They claim that Sharlene Simon was speeding, under the influence of alcohol or using her mobile phone to text at the time of the incident, and that her husband allowed her to drive her vehicle when “he knew or ought to have known” she was in no fit state to do so.

Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.

49 comments

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broomwagonblog [14 posts] 2 years ago
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Awful awful awful.

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broomwagonblog [14 posts] 2 years ago
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Awful awful awful.

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OldRidgeback [2616 posts] 2 years ago
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broomwagonblog wrote:

Awful awful awful.

+1 - this is a disgraceful turn of events

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rdanderson [5 posts] 2 years ago
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Disgraceful and a sad example of someone who does not belong in the gene pool....

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ricolek [40 posts] 2 years ago
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Sigh. What has this page become? A platform for fueling hate against anybody who accidentaly harms a cyclist. I'm gonna unfollow your fb page because it makes me sick how self-righteous the people who comment there are. The amount of stupid generalizations is just enormous. It makes me sad that the majority of the community one would like to feel a part of is acting this way. It does exactly the opposite of what it should - teach people respect and look out for each other.

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gb901 [149 posts] 2 years ago
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ricolek wrote:

Sigh. What has this page become? A platform for fueling hate against anybody who accidentaly harms a cyclist. I'm gonna unfollow your fb page because it makes me sick how self-righteous the people who comment there are. The amount of stupid generalizations is just enormous. It makes me sad that the majority of the community one would like to feel a part of is acting this way. It does exactly the opposite of what it should - teach people respect and look out for each other.

WTF - are you for real?

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pjc67 [35 posts] 2 years ago
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Sorry but no one comes out of this with any credit. The lads were cycling three abreast with little or no visibility in the middle of the night; the driver was breaking the speed limit and then bringing ridiculous litigation and the parents are suing her with, on the face of it, no real evidence to support their claims. An appalling tale from start to finish - nothing to do with cars vs bikes just a lot of idiots

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Gkam84 [9086 posts] 2 years ago
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I for one am on the fence here...Coming back from a "coffee shop" a 1.30am....not adequate lighting or reflectors. Riding three breast.

It is ALLEGED by the family of the boy who died that she was either unfit through alcohol or texting and that her partner should not have let her drive....I'm sure the police would have at least checked her alcohol level.

[EDIT] Police did not suspect alcohol was involved, and she was not given a breathalyzer"](http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2014/04/26/newser-driver-sues-...)

The family are also trying to sue her.....so this could just be a counter claim to stop that action.

But I do feel for her, if she was law abiding and genuinely didn't see the guys on the bikes, that is the sort of thing that ruins lives.

But suing is a little over the top on BOTH parts.

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northstar [1108 posts] 2 years ago
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What utter scumbags

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Gkam84 [9086 posts] 2 years ago
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Just been made aware, the husband of the driver is also suing

Quote:

Even more confusing Cameron said, is the fact that the woman’s husband, Jules Simon, a York Regional Police officer, is also suing for $100,000 for damages and expenses incurred because of his wife’s suffering.

http://www.torontosun.com/2014/04/25/witness-haunted-by-tragic-bike-acci...

It also makes sense to me now why the family are suing, it REEKS of a cover up, he's a serving police man who didn't even have to hang around as he and his wife were let home and other witnesses had to stay around....

I am not so on the fence anymore.

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vbvb [587 posts] 2 years ago
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Fewer front page stories about misery half a world away, please.

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fatbastard [24 posts] 2 years ago
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Sigh  102 , I despair at the human race sometimes. Wait....does that mean I can sue someone for making me despair?! Haven't the family of the teenage lad suffered enough? Now with 2 deaths in the family.

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jasecd [389 posts] 2 years ago
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vbvb wrote:

Fewer front page stories about misery half a world away, please.

Absolutely. Cycling is primarily a safe activity and Road.cc should be seeking to promote it - i worry that the volume of these stories on this site could be sending out the wrong message. It's a horrible story but I don't know how relevant this is to the UK as it's thousands of miles away.

I love the rest of the site but could do without this.

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faz. [23 posts] 2 years ago
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I must admit Road.CC post 2-3 times a week about something that is half way around the world, just because it's 'shocking'. This is wrong... Reminds me of the Mail online.

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Gkam84 [9086 posts] 2 years ago
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jasecd wrote:
vbvb wrote:

Fewer front page stories about misery half a world away, please.

Absolutely. Cycling is primarily a safe activity and Road.cc should be seeking to promote it - i worry that the volume of these stories on this site could be sending out the wrong message. It's a horrible story but I don't know how relevant this is to the UK as it's thousands of miles away.

I love the rest of the site but could do without this.

So lets have stories about fluffy bunnies and pretty flowers you see while cycling around the countryside and not being hit by a car.....great story...

We all know cycling is a safe activity, but safe things don't make news stories..

If you want safe and nice things, Go here http://road.cc/blogs

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nuclear coffee [208 posts] 2 years ago
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faz. wrote:

I must admit Road.CC post 2-3 times a week about something that is half way around the world, just because it's 'shocking'. This is wrong... Reminds me of the Mail online.

Agreed. If it's in Britain, we can change it, we should know. If not, what's the point?

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nuclear coffee [208 posts] 2 years ago
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gb901 wrote:
ricolek wrote:

Sigh. What has this page become? A platform for fueling hate against anybody who accidentaly harms a cyclist. I'm gonna unfollow your fb page because it makes me sick how self-righteous the people who comment there are. The amount of stupid generalizations is just enormous. It makes me sad that the majority of the community one would like to feel a part of is acting this way. It does exactly the opposite of what it should - teach people respect and look out for each other.

WTF - are you for real?

Yep. Arguing the motorist is always in the wrong is as bad as arguing the cyclist always is - both are human beings. If a story about me hitting somebody in THE CAR THAT I OWN came up on road.cc - frankly I don't think I'd get a fair trial. That gives me major cause for concern when it comes to the question of whether I should be supporting the "cause" or not.

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FluffyKittenofT... [1191 posts] 2 years ago
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nuclear coffee wrote:

Yep. Arguing the motorist is always in the wrong is as bad as arguing the cyclist always is - both are human beings. If a story about me hitting somebody in THE CAR THAT I OWN came up on road.cc - frankly I don't think I'd get a fair trial. That gives me major cause for concern when it comes to the question of whether I should be supporting the "cause" or not.

Well its not quite as bad, because its significantly closer to the truth - the truth being the motorist is more often in the wrong. It wouldn't always be correct of course (cf the story on here recently about the sportive rider crashing into a car while doing 40mph on the wrong side of the road) but it would be a better default assumption than the reverse.

Also, I tend more towards the view that road planners are always in the wrong, which in turn means the politicians who tell them what to do, and in turn the voters who elect those politicians.

Oh - and which is worse? Having some people think you are always the one in the wrong or always being the one who gets killed or maimed? If the former were so unbearable why do so many chose to drive when they have a choice?

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FluffyKittenofT... [1191 posts] 2 years ago
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faz. wrote:

I must admit Road.CC post 2-3 times a week about something that is half way around the world, just because it's 'shocking'. This is wrong... Reminds me of the Mail online.

All major UK websites seem to have gone 'international', or at least 'TransAtlantic' now. Its one of the few things the Mail and the Guardian have in common.

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Gkam84 [9086 posts] 2 years ago
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FluffyKittenofTindalos wrote:
faz. wrote:

I must admit Road.CC post 2-3 times a week about something that is half way around the world, just because it's 'shocking'. This is wrong... Reminds me of the Mail online.

All major UK websites seem to have gone 'international', or at least 'TransAtlantic' now. Its one of the few things the Mail and the Guardian have in common.

Road.cc doesn't claim anywhere I can see to be a UK website.

CC infers Cycling Club to me. A worldwide cycling club infact.

They cover stories for all over the world, just the same as the fantasy game covers races from all over the world and the users.....come from all over the world

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nuclear coffee [208 posts] 2 years ago
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FluffyKittenofTindalos wrote:

Oh - and which is worse? Having some people think you are always the one in the wrong or always being the one who gets killed or maimed? If the former were so unbearable why do so many chose to drive when they have a choice?

Apparently, I'm both. And I'm honestly not sure. Why do I have to make that choice? Why can't we hope to improve driving standards without laying great vengeance and furious anger on someone before finding out whether they could have done anything better?

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jasecd [389 posts] 2 years ago
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Gkam84 wrote:
jasecd wrote:
vbvb wrote:

Fewer front page stories about misery half a world away, please.

Absolutely. Cycling is primarily a safe activity and Road.cc should be seeking to promote it - i worry that the volume of these stories on this site could be sending out the wrong message. It's a horrible story but I don't know how relevant this is to the UK as it's thousands of miles away.

I love the rest of the site but could do without this.

So lets have stories about fluffy bunnies and pretty flowers you see while cycling around the countryside and not being hit by a car.....great story...

We all know cycling is a safe activity, but safe things don't make news stories..

If you want safe and nice things, Go here http://road.cc/blogs

So if we all know cycling is a safe activity why does it appear that a popular cycling website is disproportionatly reporting incidents like these?

The deaths in the UK and sentencing are relevant - in other counties I don't think they are. The rest of the site is great - reviews, the sport etc. are all brilliantly reported on. I think these sensational stories are the weak point.

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Gkam84 [9086 posts] 2 years ago
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Why are other countries not relevant?

This is not a UK exclusive site, we have users from all over the world, so I think it is wholly relevant to report incidents from all over.

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giff77 [1251 posts] 2 years ago
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I've always enjoyed the international feel that road.cc has. It's great to hear stories from far flung places and interact with fellow cyclists across the world. Sadly, a lot of the stories that the team come up with will be those that have had media exposure like the OP here. Very rarely will you get the press covering the good stories for example,a youngster my way had their bike stolen and the LBS heard about it and replaced the bike. This didn't even reach the local rag, yet it is a good story for cycling. Or how many of us complete endurance cycles for charity and it doesn't hit the media?

And you know what, this is where we come in as members of the 'road.cc family'. It's up to us to make use of the blog page and the forum to post the good stories that we hear of or our GOOD experiences. I will admit, I'm as guilty as any other in not doing this and being quite happy to join in the tirades about shocking behaviour of motorists and cyclists.

So how about the moaners of the 'bad stories' posting some good experiences themselves.

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FluffyKittenofT... [1191 posts] 2 years ago
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Gkam84 wrote:
FluffyKittenofTindalos wrote:
faz. wrote:

I must admit Road.CC post 2-3 times a week about something that is half way around the world, just because it's 'shocking'. This is wrong... Reminds me of the Mail online.

All major UK websites seem to have gone 'international', or at least 'TransAtlantic' now. Its one of the few things the Mail and the Guardian have in common.

Road.cc doesn't claim anywhere I can see to be a UK website.

CC infers Cycling Club to me. A worldwide cycling club infact.

They cover stories for all over the world, just the same as the fantasy game covers races from all over the world and the users.....come from all over the world

True, but it seems to me that the posters/readers are overwhelmingly from the UK.

And for me there's just more than enough to get worked up about in relation to UK transport issues, without bringing in foreign ones where one just doesn't know much about the context or background and where the chances of getting anything changed seem even more negligible. Its just a recipe for getting uselessly upset.

I think this sort of problem (cyclists vs motorised traffic) is, even more than say, an issue like racism, is very much tied into local culture and law and physical conditions and you need local knowledge to be able to have an informed opinion as to what to make of an event like this. Are there any posters local to this event on this thread?

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Gkam84 [9086 posts] 2 years ago
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Giff, stories like that can be published here, just contact the news team and give them the story....

Want to talk to the news team? info [at] road.cc (Click here)

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Gkam84 [9086 posts] 2 years ago
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FluffyKittenofTindalos wrote:

True, but it seems to me that the posters/readers are overwhelmingly from the UK.

And for me there's just more than enough to get worked up about in relation to UK transport issues, without bringing in foreign ones where one just doesn't know much about the context or background and where the chances of getting anything changed seem even more negligible. Its just a recipe for getting uselessly upset.

I think this sort of problem (cyclists vs motorised traffic) is, even more than say, an issue like racism, is very much tied into local culture and law and physical conditions and you need local knowledge to be able to have an informed opinion as to what to make of an event like this. Are there any posters local to this event on this thread?

In this thread, I have no idea, but there are on Facebook, which is where I got my secondary information about the husband being a police officer.

Just because people do not comment, doesn't mean they do not read the story. Yes the majority of people who comment on here are from the UK, but readers, I doubt there is much of a majority from anywhere.

People in the UK seem to get much more worked up about things and that leads them to feel they MUST comment on a subject, where are others are more laid back, read the articles and have their opinion, but sometimes feel that it does not need to be shared with the world.

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noether [96 posts] 2 years ago
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Firstly. Reporting from all over the Anglo Saxon world vastly enriches this site. The discussion of best practices in a number of countries could even tempt UK voters to want some of them implemented in their own country! Especially regarding cycling, what this site is all about.
Secondly. This tragic fait divers lifts the tip of the curtain ever so slightly on the very different models of jurisprudence evolving in the New World vs the Old one, where the former becomes ever more litigious. A generation or two from now, the USA/Canada will have become a very difficult place to understand for a European!
Thirdly. Please check out the article in road.cc earlier this week on the introduction of presumed liability which emphasizes that the road user capable of the greater harm has the greater responsibility (Jacknorell).Introduction of presumed liability would have reduced the temptation to litigate: driving above the speed limit in a SUV? killing and maiming 2 out of 3 cyclists? Guilty. Now, let us hear about mitigating circumstances.

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vbvb [587 posts] 2 years ago
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Gkam84 wrote:

So lets have stories about fluffy bunnies and pretty flowers

Is that really the choice? Either we can soak in all the awful tales that are dreadful enough to be heard this far away or we can read about bunnies? Really? How many thousand people cycled to the Scottish parliament the other day in the Pedal on Parliament? How young was the youngest? Did it go well? No idea. But I know all about some depressing idiot case from Canada. It's not real life vs bunnies. The coverage of Canada here is not representative of real life. And before it is suggested, no, I will not submit my own PoParliament story. This Canada misery was trawled up by a paid writer (more into cooking than fixing bikes, as he admits in his profile).

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Argos74 [390 posts] 2 years ago
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Saw this yesterday, did some more reading and digging around (Gawker, r/rage, local and national news sites). There's only 25% of this reported so far, and seems there'll be 25% that never comes to light because of odd behaviour by the police at the scene and in the investigation.

The current position appears to be that Majewski's have lodged a PI claim against Simon's insurance company, and alleged to have been raising merry hell in the home town, resulting in Mrs Simon being harassed at work, and their home vandalised. The suit against the dead kids and their families is a spoiler countersuit, albeit one which leaves a very, very bad taste in one's mouth.

I'd prefer to read good stories about cycling as well. Mine's a receipt dated this morning for a cup of coffee and some cake, pinned up on the noticeboard. It won't get a thousand posts on Reddit, but it's my little bit of good cycling news for the week.

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