UK & World News
'Biker Brawl': Motorcyclist Appears In Court
A motorcyclist has been charged with reckless driving after he apparently sparked a confrontation between a motorist and bikers that ended with three people being injured.
The driver of a black Range Rover, Alexian Lien, was allegedly beaten up by the group after he had reportedly driven over one of the bikers, Edwin Mieses, during an attempt to get away.
Mr Lien, 33, who was in the SUV with his wife and two-year-old child, needed stitches on his face but his family was unhurt in the Manhattan incident.
Mr Mieses' legs were broken and he has spine injuries that will leave him paralysed, his wife said.
Christopher Cruz, 28, of New Jersey, is the only person to be charged in the case.
He is accused of reckless driving and unlawful imprisonment. Cruz's lawyer denied all allegations as his client appeared in court and the suspect was later released on bail.
A second man arrested after surrendering to police was not prosecuted, the Manhattan district attorney's office said.
The New York incident was caught on a helmet-mounted camera worn by a biker and was posted online anonymously.
Prosecutors and police said Cruz was taking part in a motorcycle rally speeding along Manhattan's West Side Highway.
Cruz cut in front of a black Range Rover and, still staring at its driver, slowed down so much that the rear tyre of his bike bumped the front of the SUV, they said.
He got out and approached the SUV, prosecutors said.
A video captured the moment as about two dozen riders slowed down, swarming the SUV and blocking its path. Some got off their bikes and approached the vehicle.
Police said a number of them began damaging the Range Rover.
The motorist, who police say was frightened for his family in the car, suddenly lurched forward, driving over a rider before heading north. The motorcyclists chased the driver for about 2.5 miles and got the SUV to stop.
The chase ended when the SUV left the highway and was stuck in traffic. The video showed one biker using his helmet to smash the driver's window.
Police said the group then pulled the man from the SUV and beat him, although that part is not shown on the recording posted online.
The biker who may never walk again, Ed Mieses, is the one hit by the car as it sped away, his wife Dayana said.
He suffered broken legs, fractured ribs and spine injuries, according to his family.
At least one other biker was injured in the incident.
Mr Mieses, known as Jay Meezee, is an aspiring rapper from outside Boston, and he and his wife have two teenage children.
"There's no hope for his back," Mrs Meises told reporters outside hospital.
"They crushed his spine. They broke it in two different places, so he will be forever, forever paralysed."
"My husband got off his bike to help the guy," she said of the confrontation.
"When you look at the video you can see he (the driver of the car) is running over something. It's not just a motorcycle, it's a human being that was under there."
Police say Mr Lien had called 911 to report the bikers were driving erratically, and reported being scared for his wife and child.
He has not been charged, but police are still investigating.