A B.C. woman claims she was the victim of a vicious road rage assault and Vancouver police aren’t taking it seriously.
The incident happened on July 23 near East 41st Avenue and Victoria Drive, and was partially captured on video.
Maureen Ryan told Global News she was riding her motorcycle and pulled into a lane in front of another biker, which she believes sparked the altercation.
WATCH: Video captures road rage incident involving motorcyclist
“He came up behind me and before he stopped he punched me in the head,” she said.
“I said, ‘What the hell are you doing? You just punched me in the head.’ And he said, ‘f–in’ this’ and ‘f–in’ that,’ I can’t remember. So I turned my bike forward and I hit him with my left arm. I’m not that big, I doubt he even felt it. And then he turned around and he just punched me three more times.”
Ryan said the man knocked her over, then later kicked her bike down a second time.
Ryan called police, who obtained security video from a TransLink bus as part of the investigation.
In the video, the two bikes can be seen apparently touching one another, before the male biker punches Ryan in the head.
The two bikes then stop, and words appear to be exchanged. Ryan then drives towards the man and bumps his bike with hers twice.
There is shoving back and forth, before the man punches Ryan again and pushes her bike over.
The bus pulls away a short time later.
WATCH: Road rage incident captured on camera during Metro Vancouver morning commute
Investigators decided not to proceed with the case, with a spokesperson for Vancouver police describing the situation as a “grey area.”
“It appears two people driving motorcycles did engage in maybe a consensual fight, or some sort of disagreement where they did push each other, and appears there might have been hits back and forth. A motor vehicle accident did occur out of this incident,” said Sgt. Aaron Roed.
“Officers did investigate and it was not in the public interest to proceed with charges. Both drivers of the motorcycles were interviewed and did have conflicting stories, and after viewing the video the officer investigating believes there was no charges to proceed with at this time.”
That response wasn’t good enough for Ryan, who acknowledged her bike did come in contact with the other rider’s — a move she said was meant to keep him there until police arrived.
“The police say because I touched my bike to his bike, that it’s a wash.”
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Criminal lawyer Sarah Leamon said the incident is complicated by the fact that we can’t see what happened before and after the clip.
“We can’t tell what transpired, what words were exchanged, there’s no way to know other than getting statements from the two parties that were involved,” said Leamon.
“It’s difficult to say whether perhaps this was a consent fight or whether or not there could have been any words, actions or gestures that may have caused this person to act out in the way they did, which would provide them with a legal defence to do so.”
Leamon said road rage incidents are on the rise, and that there is room for police and courts to take them more seriously.
However, she said they may not always be clear cut, and that the best option is not to physically engage.
“The best thing to do is disengage, try and get yourself into a safe space, not to retaliate,” she said.
“Because that could lead to further injury, but it could also lead to a situation where police decide charges are not warranted.”
Vancouver police echoed that advice, saying any driver who finds themselves in an escalating situation should call 911.
As for Ryan, she said she’s speaking with lawyers, and has plans to take the incident to small claims court.