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US drunk driver says cyclist he killed was friend he was due to give a lift

Jeffrey R Moran initially claimed he had spotted bike on road and found rider in ditch

A motorist in Maine, US, has been charged with drunk driving following a collision with a cyclist – the victim being a friend of the driver, who said he was on his way to pick him up.

Waldoboro Police Department alleges that Jeffrey R Moran, aged 27, was over the limit when the GMC Yukon SUV he was driving struck and killed 31-year-old Jessie Hayden, reports the Sun Journal.

In an affidavit, Moran had claimed he was on his way to pick up the victim when the collision occurred.

Initially he had told police that he had come across a bike on the road and discovered its rider lying in a nearby ditch.

The incident took place last Saturday evening in Waldoboro, Maine, with the victim pronounced dead at the scene.

Police chief Bill Labombarde said it happened near Hayden’s home, which was “a short ways up the street from where the accident was.”

He added that the cyclist and Moran were travelling in opposite directions and that the motorist had not crossed the centre line of the road prior to the victim being struck by the vehicle’s near side bumper.

According to police officer Thomas Bartunek, there was also a 13-year-old male passenger in the vehicle at the time of the fatal collision.

The officer said: “While [Moran] was talking with me, I observed his eyes were bloodshot and glassy,” adding that the driver, who had a number of unopened cans of beer in his vehicle, disclosed he had had one drink that evening.

A breath test revealed that Moran’s blood alcohol content stood at 0.09 per cent, a little over the legal limit in Maine of 0.08 per cent. 

Moran is reported to have been charged with a Class B felony of operating a vehicle under the influence, and has been released on $10,000 cash bail.

Simon has been news editor at road.cc since 2009, reporting on 10 editions and counting of pro cycling’s biggest races such as the Tour de France, stories on issues including infrastructure and campaigning, and interviewing some of the biggest names in cycling. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, his background has proved invaluable in reporting on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, and the bike industry. He splits his time between London and Cambridge, and loves taking his miniature schnauzer Elodie on adventures in the basket of her Elephant Bike.

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