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Cyclist injured by wire stretched across West Yorkshire trail

Police appeal for information after incident near Wetherby on Monday

Police in Leeds are appealing for witnesses after a cyclist sustained injuries due to a metal wire that had been deliberately strung across a path in woodland near Wetherby.

The 52-year-old man was cycling with his son at Wothersome Woods, Bramham, at about 5.30pm on Monday when he was knocked off his mountain bike after riding into the wire, causing him to sustain a wrist injury.

Wetherby cyclist's injury (via West Yorkshire Police).PNG

Sergeant Dave Lund, of Leeds District Wildlife and Rural Crime Team, said: “This wire had been deliberately placed across the path with the aim of causing injury to cyclists or walkers.

“The consequences could easily have been more serious and we are treating this incident as an offence of attempted grievous bodily harm with intent.

“The position of the wire would have been at head height for a child riding along the path, and the man was being followed by his son.

“This was clearly a very dangerous thing for someone to do and we would like to hear from anyone who witnessed anything suspicious in the area or who has any information that could assist in identifying who was responsible.”

Anyone who has information is asked to contact Leeds District Wildlife and Rural Crime Team at Garforth Police Station via 101 quoting crime reference 13200196203 or online here.

Information can also be given anonymously via the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

We’ve reported in the past on cyclists being targeted by people placing booby traps on trails, and in recent weeks we have also covered signs in some parts of the countryside urging bike riders to stay away during the lockdown period, with some locals concerned they might spread the coronavirus.

On Sunday, we reported how after reading the comments to an article published on on Saturday, a parish council in Cheshire removed signs telling riders to keep away and confine their cycling to where they lived.

> Updated: Parish council in Cheshire takes down sign telling cyclists to stay away after reading readers' comments

We also reported at the weekend how a number of cyclists in Beckenham, south east London had punctured after drawing pins were spread on a road that is a popular route for cyclists.

> Tack attack: Cyclists puncture as drawing pins strewn across popular south London cycle route

Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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Compact Corned Beef | 4 years ago
1 like

What, practically, can be done about this sort of awful behaviour? Or is it just one of those 'publicise and hope they don't do it again' things? Asking out of curiosity rather than cynicism.

srchar replied to Compact Corned Beef | 4 years ago

You'd have thought that, as this sort of attack becomes more common, someone's going to get caught at some point, and one would hope that the courts would see fit to make an example of them. Proper crims don't waste their time on this sort of nonsense; the perpetrator will be a "normal" person whose life will be ruined by a spell in prison.

Sriracha replied to Compact Corned Beef | 4 years ago
1 like

Handwringing by the police won't achieve much. There would have to be some will and determination to catch the perps. It is inconceivable that whoever did this keeps it entirely to themselves. There will be some online chatter about it, some knowing comments and so on. They will have possibly bought the materials, appeared on nearby CCTV, etc. But I doubt there will be any attempt whatsoever to clear up this crime until it becomes a more serious offence - so much for prevention.

brooksby replied to Sriracha | 4 years ago
1 like

Sriracha wrote:

It is inconceivable that whoever did this keeps it entirely to themselves. There will be some online chatter about it, some knowing comments and so on. 

Definitely - I'd be checking the Bramham or Thorner village FB groups for someone saying how they'd saved the NHS by stopping those Bl00dy Cyclists.

theloststarfighter | 4 years ago

Those paths are frequently used by people who drive and park on the Thorner-Bramham road and walk their dogs down & round the pond.  There's often lots of little black bags hanging that those 'responsible' owners see fit just to leave.  There's a couple of main bridlepaths but it doesn't look like it happened on one of those.  This was specific and targeted at cyclists in order to seriously hurt and discourage others from using the trails.  There's not much housing for a few miles in each direction so this isn't kids mucking about in the woods either, it's a twisted self entitled adult with a serious lack of judgement.

brooksby | 4 years ago

Possibly a self-styled lockdown vigilante who cares so much about stopping cyclists (and others? I don't think so) using trails so as to (in their mind) 'Save The NHS' (TM) that they'll risk making someone have to be sent to A&E...

ktache | 4 years ago

This is so much nastier than tacks on the road.

This is the outcome from so much anti cycling rhetoric.

Sriracha replied to ktache | 4 years ago

Yes, I don't think walkers were the target, despite what the police say.

Hirsute replied to Sriracha | 4 years ago

The next in line would be runners - 'the scourge of runners panting over people'

Seems a bit improbable (although not impossible) that a walker would be a victim but no way would thay have the same injuries as a cyclist.

werics replied to Hirsute | 4 years ago

Hirsute - while I agree that cyclists were the likely target, I still think you could injure yourself pretty bad walking or especially running. Personally experience (like buttholes, everyone has some) is that I rack up far worse trail injuries running than cycling. I feel like that's down mostly to falling wrong and with less time to break it, though, so I'm not 100% sure how applicable here.

Captain Badger replied to Sriracha | 4 years ago

I agree, but I'm glad the police presented it as an issue affecting the wider public, rather than just bloody cyclists

spen replied to ktache | 4 years ago

Or it could just be one of those things idiots do from time to time, look through roadcc archive and you'll find plenty. 

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