In May of this year, John Roemer was riding his bicycle north on Union Avenue in Williamsburg when he was struck from behind by a driver near Ainslie Street. Roemer suffered a fractured hip and was in the ICU for three days. The driver's insurance recognized that she was at fault and paid for Roemer's medical bills and his bicycle, but the driver wants recompense for the damage Roemer's body and bike did to her car, so she's suing him for $2,000 in small claims court.
"I couldn't tell you what's in her head, but it's outrageous and crazy that it's even happening," says Roemer's attorney, Daniel Flanzig. "I just think it's her not accepting responsibility and not realizing how seriously she injured John."
Flanzig says he'll be representing Roemer when the case is heard in January. This is the second time one of Flanzig's clients has been sued by the entity that ran them over.
Last year Justin Johnson was biking in Brooklyn when he was struck by an unmarked NYPD vehicle. Johnson was hospitalized, and later received a bill for roughly $1,200 from the City to pay for the car's repairs.
"Basically the Comptroller's office hired a law firm to get back damages, which is one thing if you own a car and have insurance, but it's another thing if you're a cyclist and you typically don't have insurance," Flanzig says.
Flanzig took that case and the City dropped their claim, and later stopped the policy of pursuing victims of collisions for damages.