FerndaleJuly 25, 2012
'Bicycle rage' incident leads to attempted stabbing
By Jeremy Selweski
C & G Staff Writer
An argument between two bicyclists in downtown Ferndale ended after police arrested one of them for assaulting the other with a knife.
According to Detective Lt. Bill Wilson, the suspect — David R. Simmons, 69, of Oak Park — was riding his bike near Nine Mile Road and Woodward Avenue when he crossed paths with the victim, a 29-year-old Ferndale man, at around 3:30 p.m. on July 20. Simmons was aggravated because he believed that the victim had cut him off, so he yelled obscenities at the other bicyclist as he rode away.
The victim later approached Simmons on foot on West Troy Street behind SOHO, 205 W. Nine Mile Road, and confronted him about yelling at him earlier.
“They exchanged some threatening words, and then (Simmons) got off his bike, pulled out a knife and swiped at the man with it,” Wilsons explained. “The blade grazed his skin, but it wasn’t enough to really hurt him.”
Simmons then pedaled off on his bike as witnesses at the scene called the police. Ferndale officers soon arrived and stopped Simmons near Troy and Allen Road. They searched him and found a knife with a 3.5-inch blade attached to his belt, Wilson said. He later confessed to the attempted stabbing but claimed he was afraid that the victim was going to attack him. There was no indication that he was intoxicated at the time of his arrest.
“The fact that this happened between two people riding bikes is unusual but not really significant,” Wilson said. “The suspect seems like he has some mental problems, and people like that can pop up anytime and anywhere.”
Simmons, who has no prior criminal history, was arraigned in Ferndale 43rd District Court on July 21 on charges of assault with a dangerous weapon, a four-year felony. Magistrate James Brennan set a personal bond of $750 and scheduled a pre-exam conference for 1 p.m. July 26.
Wilson noted that Simmons, after being arraigned, was released on bond and sent for psychiatric evaluation at a local hospital.
“The strange part about this is the fact that he has no previous criminal record,” Wilson said. “It’s very unusual for a person with no record to suddenly attempt a violent crime like this, especially someone his age.”
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