On December 1, 2006 around 9:30PM, 22-year-old Eric Ng was biking north on bike path by the West Side Highway. Around the same time, 27-year-old Eugene Cidron, leaving a party at Chelsea Piers in his BMW, mistook the bike path for the actual highway, drove south on the bike path and fatally struck Ng near West Street - at least a mile from Chelsea Piers. Ng was hit so hard that his bicycle and shoe were thrown into highway. Police found that Cidron's blood alcohol level was 0.16 - twice the legal limit.

Yesterday, Cidron pleaded guilty to second degree manslaughter. The plea gives Cidron a 3.5 to 10.5 year sentence, versus facing a 5 to 15 year sentence if he were convicted in a trial. Cidron's lawyer said that his client pleaded guilty "because he has two children and wants to see them again before they finish high school. " Cidron is free on $150,000 bail, which the AP says was "secured by his mother-in-law's house."

Ng's death prompted discussion of installing concrete and steel bollards on the bike path, instead of plastic pylons, to prevent further tragedy. And his friends and others saddened by his death (Ng was an NYU graduate and public school teacher) held a memorial ride and created a ghost bike for him: Eliot at Visual Resistance wrote, "When we create ghost bikes, or go on memorial rides, we tap into the hurt of this world and choose to honor that stranger we know could be our friend, our sister, ourself. We choose to remember, even if we never knew. That empathy is a holy rebellion. That choice makes us whole."

As it happens, when asked about improving cyclist safety after Ng's death, Mayor Bloomberg said bikers should "pay attention...Even if they're in the right, they are the lightweights." A few months later, Bloomberg announced his PlaNYC congestion pricing plan.