So on my morning bike commute March 10, 2022, I was rolling west on 11th Street approaching Normandie, when I saw in my rear mirror an LAPD patrol car about a half-block behind me. At Mariposa Street, the next intersection, I slowed, cleared it of cross traffic and kept going, after which the officer driving also rolls the intersection,
For the record, this is how I ride, whether or not a police officer is present: Upon approaching an intersection be it a four-way stop or two-way, I slow, clear it from both directions, and if safe keep going. If there are any vehicles either approaching or stopped at the intersection, I will yield the right of way to them. Is it a violation? Yep. The law is clear in that just like any multi-ton motor vehicle I am obligated to come to a full and complete stop at every stop sign before proceeding. Have I been cited for it before? Yep. Is there a chance I’ll be cited for it in the future? Sure. In fact, I was expecting to get cited for it this morning — or at least pulled over and chastised.
Because as you’ll see in the above video from my rear-facing helmet cam, after the aforementioned LAPD cruiser executed the same violation I had done, the officer appears to speed up. Perhaps it was in an attempt to pull along side me and just warn me what a bad bicyclist I was. But stopped vehicles lined up from the red light ahead at Normandie prevented him from coming up next to me as I continued to the limit line, so instead he pulled in directly to a stop behind me while we waited and waited for the green light.
I was quite surprised he didn’t light me up. Maybe it was the cameras on my helmet. Maybe it was the old “Los Angeles Bike Battalion” badge I have pinned to my backpack replete with a black band representing all those cyclists who’ve lost their lives on these streets. Maybe the officer had better things to do than detain and write up some old guy on a bike for executing a completely safe slow-roll through a residential area stop sign. I don’t know why, but he exercised his discretion — as he should have. The light turned green, I continued west on 11th. He turned right on Normandie.