Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Sylvia was killed six years ago today. They say "it" gets easier but it doesn't; it just becomes different. We love hearing what you, Sylvia's friends, are doing. We live Sylvia's hopes and dreams through you. We are so proud of all the exciting paths you're charting for your lives. We love to hear about the children and grandchildren of you, our contemporaries. Though every day is hard, we stay very busy. It's our best medicine. Thank you all for your good wishes. Without friends and close family members, we would never be able to get through the day. The pictures are of Sylvia in Mali in 2006. All our love, Steve and Francoise.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Francoise and I haven't posted anything on this blog for over two years.  We'd like to bring it back to life and want to encourage you to submit posts.  In less than a month, it will be what would have been Sylvia's 27th birthday.  Once again, we will celebrate her life.  The event will be at our house Sunday April 27 from noon to 4 pm - a potluck brunch and desserts.  Look for an invitation but if you don't get one, let us know if you can come.  We are hoping to raise funds for the Sylvia Bingham Fund which has given away almost all the donations people have made.  (Thank you for them!).  See http://www.sylviabinghamfund.org/grantsawarded.php for a listing of grants made.  In the meantime, please post any thoughts to this blog.  Memories are always precious.  Thanks!  Steve

Sunday, November 27, 2011

The criminal trial of the truck driver who killed Sylvia over 26 months ago in Cleveland has finally concluded. Herschel Roberts was convicted Monday 11/21 of “aggravated vehicular homicide” due to recklessness. He was sentenced to 3 years in prison and had his driver’s license revoked for life. Various articles and TV news clips can be found by googling “herschel roberts cleveland.”

We were wonderfully supported by Sylvia’s friends and the Cleveland biking community throughout the trial. We were unhappy that evidence of the use of drugs by the driver (16 times the legal limit) was ‘suppressed’ (not admitted) by the judge in the bench trial (no jury, at the defendant’s request) but he nonetheless concluded that Roberts had to have seen Sylvia in his side mirrors had he looked before turning sharply right. His failure to exercise care was deemed recklessness.

Several legal issues which are important for the biking community in Ohio arose during the two-year legal proceedings which Steve will be addressing as part of his work on the Sylvia Bingham Fund (SBF) when he reduces his work time at Bay Area Legal Aid to 20% in January.

Expect to hear from us as we strive to raise more funds to underwrite the Fund’s donations to grass-roots organizations whose work corresponds to the SBF mission. If you would like to claim a 2011 tax deduction, we encourage donations at this time to the Peace Development Fund. See the 'contact and donation info' page for details on how to make donations. In January, the items regarding legal proceedings will be moved to an inside page as the website evolves into the SBF’s central communications medium.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Criminal Trial will start on Monday, November 14

It was confirmed this week that the criminal trial of Herschel Roberts who killed Sylvia over two years ago will finally begin at 9 a.m. on November 14 at the Cuyahoga Count Justice Center at 1200 Ontario St. in downtown Cleveland in room 19D, Judge Gaul presiding. The criminal charges are Aggravated Vehicular Homicide and Failure to Stop After an Accident. The trial is expected to last up to one week. The trial is of course open to the public and anyone interested is encouraged to attend. -- Steve and Francoise

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Criminal Trial Delayed Again

We are not good bloggers! As many of you know by now, the criminal trial has once more been postponed from April 13, with no new trial date set. The criminal defense attorney was in the middle of a murder trial that itself had been postponed. There will be a hearing with witnesses on May 2 to consider the defendant's motion to suppress all evidence relating to the urine drug test of the defendant that revealed he had over 16 times the legal limit of marijuana metabolites in him. The argument to suppress? The test was conducted by a company that was not licensed by the State of Ohio, even though the tests were done pursuant to regulations of the US Department of Transportation. The new trial date won't even be set until the hearing occurs on May 2. The disfunctionality of the criminal justice system is unbelievable and very discouraging for Francoise and me. This is perhaps the sixth or seventh postponement of the trial. Sylvia was killed by the driver over 19 months ago. Francoise and I will of course be going to the hearing.

Meanwhile, a second round of grants from the Sylvia Bingham Fund is about to be made. The names of the organizations will be posted on the website shortly.

Please remember Sylvia on what would have been her 24th birthday on April 22, Earthday. We still love to receive remembrances of time spent with her. Her spirit burns brightly and we want it to do so always.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Criminal Trail set for Feb. 28

The criminal trial of the driver who killed Sylvia is set for February 28. See the comment to the last post. The driver was allowed to withdraw his guilty plea. The civil trail against the driver and his employer, Leff Electric, will hopefully happen in late spring. Francoise and I will of course be in Cleveland for both trials and would love to hear from any of you. Steve

Friday, September 17, 2010

TRIAL UPDATE: Truck driver pleads guilty 9/13/2010

The defendant in the criminal case plead guilty yesterday as set out in this brief news clip:http://www.19actionnews.com/Global/story.asp?S=13146612. He was sentenced to four years. We indicated that we would not object to him serving only 30 months in prison if he then performs a supervised community service obligation for another 18 months. We said it was our strong desire that the service he is ordered to perform relate to the bike/vehicle street safety issues we now so very much care about. We are of course relieved that the defendant took responsibility for his actions and hope that his sentence sends a loud message to drivers that conduct due to drugs or recklessness that causes the death of someone on a bicycle will have severe consequences.

We are surrounded by Sylvia's friends here in Cleveland. Today, September 15, on the one-year anniversary of her death, we will participate in a memorial bike bike traveling the route Sylvia was taking exactly a year ago on her way to work at Hard-Hatted Women. Friday we will participate in a city-wide festival to promote sustainable transportation in Cleveland (the second item at this link: http://www.gcbl.org/planning-development-projects/city-sustainability-program).

Thanks to all of you who sent notes to us. Steve and Francoise.