A cyclist has been cleared of killing a pedestrians after hitting her with his e-bike.
Sakine Cihan died when she was hit by Thomas Hanlon, who was riding a modified electric bike, in August 2018.
Ms Cihan , 56, was taken to hospital but died from a “catastrophic” head injury a day after the collision.
Mr Hanlon appeared at the Old Bailey in central London, charged with causing death by careless driving and driving without a licence.
But after a four-day trial, the 32-year-old was cleared by the jury on Monday (March 2), the BBC reports. (opens in new tab)
The incident happened in Kingsland High Street in Dalston, east London on August 28, 2018, and the court heard that Mr Hanlon was driving 10mph over the 20mph speed limit.
Hanlon’s bike was powered by a battery, but the court heard it is classed as a motorcycle and not an e-bike because it was capable of travelling faster than the 15.5mph legal limit.
The court also heard that in an interview Hanlon admitted leaving the scene but said he didn’t have a chance to swerve to avoid Ms Cihan as she crossed the road.
Cyclist Raymond Murphy witnessed the crash and said in a statement that Mr Hanlon’s bike was “was going way too quickly for a normal electric bicycle.”
Defending Mr Hanlon, Claire Howell said: “He is going straight along a straight road on a sunny clear day when he has got the right of way and he can see the lights have changed to green and he’s just moving through.
“His reactions were quicker than many confident and careful drivers in the time it took him to react to her stepping out, which suggests he was keeping a good look out.”
By law, e-bikes can only be driven without a licence or insurance of they are limited to 15.5mph.
The jury took just over an hour to clear Mr Hanlon of the charges.
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Alex Ballinger is editor of BikeBiz magazine, the leading publication for the UK cycle industry, and is the former digital news editor for CyclingWeekly.com. After gaining experience in local newsrooms, national newspapers and in digital journalism, Alex found his calling in cycling, first as a reporter, then as news editor responsible for Cycling Weekly's online news output, and now as the editor of BikeBiz. Since pro cycling first captured his heart during the 2010 Tour de France (specifically the Contador-Schleck battle) Alex covered three Tours de France, multiple editions of the Tour of Britain, and the World Championships, while both writing and video presenting for Cycling Weekly. He also specialises in fitness writing, often throwing himself into the deep end to help readers improve their own power numbers. Away from the desk, Alex can be found racing time trials, riding BMX and mountain bikes, or exploring off-road on his gravel bike. He’s also an avid gamer, and can usually be found buried in an eclectic selection of books.
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