Three San Francisco cyclists remained hospitalized Thursday after a driver went on a rampage in the City, intentionally hitting them as they road on the street. In all four bicyclists were struck in separate incidents. One received treatment at the scene. The other suffered more serious injuries including broken bones, lacerations and internal injuries.
Police say they remain on an all out manhunt as they search for the suspect which drove through the Mission and Potrero Hill neighborhoods late Wednesday night.
The driver of a blue Nissan Rogue hit the four bicyclists in a matter of just six minutes, in what San Francisco police say was a targeted attack. Police Lt. Lyn Tomioka said they are treating it as a case of aggravated assault.
"He changed lanes in traffic, he went on the wrong side of the street," Tomioka said. "Witnesses said he was driving to try and hit the bicyclists."
The first crash was reported at about 9:45 p.m. in the 2700 block of Harrison Street. Within minutes, cyclists were down in the 2800 block of Harrison Street, at the intersection of 23rd and Pennsylvania streets and at 17th and Missouri streets.
The driver then hit a pole and crashed into a parked car but that didn't stop him. He took off on foot. Police describe him simply as a white man. A tip lead police to Berkeley later but it didn't pan out.
All of the victims are expected to survive. Police are asking witnesses to come forward to help the investigation.
Bicycle advocates said they hope this incident will highlight the need for mutual respect from all road users.
"I hope that those responsible will be brought to justice for this horrific and senseless attack," said Marc Caswell, a program manager with the 11,000-member San Francisco Bicycle Coalition. "We will continue our work to make the streets of San Francisco a place where everyone feels safe," Caswell said.
Bay City News contributed to this report.