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Bike Houston contributes $2500 to Crime Stoppers to encourage tipsters

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Bike Houston donates $2500 to Crime StoppersPress Conference in Houston City Hall Rotunda May 29 2014. Mayor Parker HPD Captain Satterwhite, HPD Officer Estrada, and Crime Stoppers Exec Dir. Mankarious
Bike Houston donates $2500 to Crime StoppersPress Conference in Houston City Hall Rotunda May 29 2014. Mayor Parker HPD Captain Satterwhite, HPD Officer Estrada, and Crime Stoppers Exec Dir. Mankarious
Marc Pembroke
(l to r)Captain Satterwhite, Officer Estrada, Mayor Parker, Raina Mankarious, Michael Payne
(l to r)Captain Satterwhite, Officer Estrada, Mayor Parker, Raina Mankarious, Michael Payne
photo by Marc Pembroke

On Thursday May 29, Houston Mayor Annise Parker held a press conference with Vice Mayor Ed Gonzalez, Michael Payne of Bike Houston and Rania Mankarious of Crimestoppers, and 2 HPD officers of to announce the resolution of a hit-and-run death of a Houston Bicyclist in December 2013.

As Mayor Parker stated, “Unfortunately whenever there is and accident between a motor vehicle and a bicycle, the bicycle loses, and the bicyclist loses.” In one case, Ms. Chelsea Morgan, was biking on Waugh Drive in Mont rose in December 2013 when she was struck and killed by a hit-and-run driver. Although police had no leads initially, the driver disclosed her awareness that she had struck a cyclist to other persons. An anonymous tip to Crime Stoppers lead to her identification

Mayor Parker then introduced Mike Payne, Executive Director of Bike Houston expressed his gratitude to Crimestoppers and to the HPD hit-and-run division and homicide divisions for their assistance in enforcing the laws protecting bicyclists. Bike Houston promotes safe cycling in many different ways including bike safety education at dealerships. It is also working with the City to develop a comprehensive biking map and to further expand the network of bike paths in parks, along former railway lines, and other locations away from streets and traffic.

Rania Markarious, Executive Director of Crimestoppers underscorred the importance of public assistance through anonymous tips about any information that might be related to a crime. She explained that perpetrators almost always talk to someone about accidents with cyclists. She also called on the public for assistance two more recent hit-and-run accidents with bicyclists:

  • On March 16, 2014 at approximately 9:45 PM in the 14000 block of the Northwest Freeway, a 49-year-old victim was struck on the service road. He suffered head trauma and was transported to a local hospital. HPD # 032296014-C

  • On January 13, 2014 Nabor Rosas-Incian was riding his bicycle in the 8200 block of Harrisburg when he was struck by an unknown driver and thrown over a bridge rail. A couple of fishermen found Rosas-Incian's body in the Brays Bayou 18 hours later. HPD #005496014-K

HPD Captain Larry Satterwhite acknowledged the role of Crime Sttoppers in assisting police. In fact, calls to Crime Stoppers, a non-profit organization are answered by Houston Police Officers. Crime Stoppers offers a reward of $5000 for information leading to the charging or arrest of a criminal.

Vice Mayor Ed Gonzalez seconded the Mayor's remarks and explained the purpose of the press conference in Spanish. He urged viewers to contact Crime Stoppers for more information on existing unsolved crimes. HPD Officer Yadira Estrada, who works with the hit-and-run division, also explained the call for tips about the January 13 and March 16 hit-and-run accidents in Spanish.