Tickets Rarely Given In Chicago for Crashes With Pedestrians and Cyclists


The Chicago Tribune recently published an article with the results of a study they conducted which seem to indicate that Chicago police tend not to issue tickets in pedestrian and cyclist crash cases.   The Tribune study of Chicago police data shows that out of more than 4,000 crashes between 2018 and November 2023 only 26% resulted in a traffic ticket or more serious charges.  The Chicago personal injury lawyers of Zneimer & Zneimer, PC see many police reports and we observe that the police rarely actually witness the accident. When the police arrive on the scene of the crash, they interview the parties involved and the witnesses to determine what happened.  From experience, the lawyers of Zneimer & Zneimer PC have observed that when there is an independent witness who will assign fault to one party or the other, then the police will be more likely to issue a ticket. Usually if there is no independent witness and both parties are blaming each other, then the police officer will not give a ticket to either party. Of course the injured pedestrian or cyclist can hire a personal injury lawyer to make a claim against the at fault motorist for damages.  If the motorist’s insurance company denies the claim then the injured party’s lawyer can file a lawsuit and have the case decided by a jury.

The Chicago Department of Transportation has  accelerated improvements on the roadways in Chicago, adding more protected bike lanes, pedestrian islands and speed bumps.  However, infrastructure improvements can only go so far in protecting pedestrians and cyclists.  Chicago Department of Transportation’s data shows that most traffic deaths involve motorists who were driving recklessly.  Almost 60% of the traffic deaths involved speeding.  Astonishingly, more than half of the pedestrian deaths in Chicago were hit and run crashes with the motorist fleeing the scene of the crash.

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