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NC State officer in university vehicle struck, killed bicyclist who ran red light

Posted March 20
Updated March 21

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— A bicyclist was killed Monday morning after running a red light and getting hit by an SUV, Raleigh police said.

The collision occurred shortly before 7 a.m. at the intersection of Corporate Center Drive and Trinity Road, police said.

John Leonard White Jr., 55, of Wesley Chapel, Fla., was southbound on Corporate Center Drive, ran a red light and was hit by an eastbound North Carolina State University-owned SUV driven by Ryan Christopher Drakeford, according to a police report.

Drakeford is an N.C. State police officer, and he was driving a marked university police vehicle, according to Raleigh police.

The impact threw White about 40 feet, according to the report.

Drakeford wasn't injured.


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  • Jason Merrill Mar 21, 8:44 a.m.
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    Which Amendment guarantees the right to ride a bike?

  • Larry Fellers Mar 21, 8:37 a.m.
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    because they feel like they don't have to follow the rule of the road...

  • Larry Fellers Mar 21, 8:35 a.m.
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    They run red lights all the time in Downtown, it was bound to happen...

  • Pete Knowles Mar 21, 6:31 a.m.
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    John, the bicyclist ran a red light. Bicyclists are subject to the same laws as drivers. Privilege and rights have nothing to do with this, as the "4' space" deal you speak of. It was an avoidable accident, and not the fault of the driver.

  • William Jones Mar 20, 9:51 p.m.
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    Some of what you said is correct, some is not. None of it had anything to do with this accident. Bicyclist was riding in the dark without lights and ran a red light. I have sympathy for the bicyclist family but I also have sympathy for the driver who it appears had little if any fault but now must live with this. I have bicycled thousands of miles and had no problem with motorist because I obey traffic laws and believe in common courtesy. I have however, as a pedestrian, been almost hit on two occasions by bicyclist running stop signs at high speed. I'm afraid some bicyclist are our own worst enemy.

  • John White Mar 20, 8:44 p.m.
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    WOW do you realize the driving is a privilege and riding a bicycle is a right? Blows your mind when people realize that fact. The bicyclist more of a right to the road than a car does. Yet people like to think it is the other way. Also are you aware that in NC a cyclist by law is to be given 4 feet of space when being passed all in 20-150(e) you should really read that. Plus 20-154 contains this:
    A driver who causes a cyclist to change travel lanes or leave that portion of a travel lanes will be fined $200. If the motorist causes a cyclist to crash causing property damage or personal injury there will be a fine of $500 and if there is more than $5,000 in property damage or serious injury, the driver will be fined $750.

    I am not making this stuff up. It is all laws in NC.

  • John White Mar 20, 8:17 p.m.
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    Most vheicle drivers in general, run red lights, speed, don't stop at stop signs, cut people off, use cell phones while driving, brake too late, follow too closely, the list goes on and on. So it does not matter what vehicle you drive the average driver breaks dozens of laws each time out. Yes, dozens of laws everyone does that. That rolling stop(?) because you think you can see no one is coming. Yes, that one is against the law. That right on Red without stopping oops yes that breaks the law also. It is right on red after stopping.

  • Norman Lewis Mar 20, 5:07 p.m.
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    A bicyclist illegally ran a red light causing a collision with a legitimately operating motor vehicle any we are supposed to be shocked? Many/most people that ride bikes routinely ignore red lights, stop and yield signs and other traffic control signals and ride where ever they want to go causing multiple accidents when people try to avoid their illegal movements. I think about the poor driver that must live with the consequences of the idiotic actions of someone else.

  • John Rees Mar 20, 10:59 a.m.
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  • Kenneth Garrett Mar 20, 10:03 a.m.
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    VERY Sorry for the loss for the deceased family - but with all the traffic / people texting its kinda guaranteed to happened . I don't think bikes should be on the road PERIOD !