Man charged with vehicular homicide in bicyclist’s death in Lyons

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LYONS, Colo. -- Residents of Lyons believe the intersection where a car struck and killed a bicyclist Saturday has been a problem spot for years.

The 47-year-old cyclist died soon after the crash at Highway 36 and 2nd Avenue at the east end of Lyons. Patrick Ward, 69, of Lyons has been charged with vehicular homicide and careless driving resulting in death.

"In my opinion it's a horribly dangerous intersection to cross," said Ashley Ahrens, a local resident. "It's a troublesome spot, no doubt about it."

"It's not a standard intersection where you turn off the highway to get on Second," said Dave Chase, the owner of Redstone Cyclery. "You can go one of four different ways on the other side of the highway. So there's cars zooming every direction. A lot of them are local people. They don't look, they're just used to just ducking in and going."

Speeding cars are a big concern, residents said Sunday, along with occasionally unpredictable cyclists. Although there's a pedestrian crosswalk at the intersection, some said motorists ignore that, too.

Ryan Witbeck said cars nearly struck his 7-year-old daughter Sawyer in the crosswalk last week.

"I almost threw my bike out to stop traffic because she was ahead of me and they weren't stopping," Witbeck said. "So when I saw those lights yesterday (Saturday) it was kind of a haunting reminder of how quickly things can change around here."

Authorities have not released details of Saturday's accident. Ward is due in Boulder County court Monday afternoon.

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