Leon J. Podles: Dialogue
January 3rd, 2015
Bishop Heather Cook of Baltimore killed a bicyclist last week.
She apparently left her apartment at the end of Roland Avenue in Baltimore. She drove south down a section of Roland Ave which is 6 lanes, untrafficked, with clearly marked bike lanes and smooth pavement.
There she encountered Tony Palermo and ran into him. He was an expert bicyclist, and worked in the bicycle section at REI. My son frequently saw him bicycling. There were other bicyclists around.
She continued on Roland Avenue and turned around. The bicyclists saw her car and realized it must have been the one involved in the accident. A bicyclist pursued her to get her license number. She drove into her gated community but the guard kept the bicyclist out.
45 minutes after the accident (according to eyewitnesses) she returned to the scene of the accident. An official from the Episcopal diocese was on hand.
Cook had had a previous encounter with the police:
Court records show that a sheriff’s deputy stopped Cook on Sept. 10, 2010, in Caroline County on the Eastern Shore. The officer wrote in a report that Cook was driving on the shoulder at 29 mph in a 50 mph-zone with a shredded front tire. The deputy noted that a strong alcohol odor emanated from the vehicle and that Cook had vomit down the front of her shirt.
The officer wrote that Cook was so intoxicated that she couldn’t finish a field sobriety test because she might fall and hurt herself.
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