UPDATE 07/06/2022 14:30 Following contact from road.cc, West Midlands Police offered the following statement in reply to the story below.
As part of our investigation into a cyclist being knocked from his bicycle on Albany Road, Coventry, on 28 May, we did review CCTV and other video footage handed in to us.
We’re very sorry he was injured and an investigator contacted him on Wednesday (1 June) to say that the available footage was not of sufficient quality to identify a suspect.
But if anyone does have further information about the incident they should contact us via Live Chat at west-midlands.police.uk, or call 101, quoting investigation number 20/508355/22.
A marshal at last weekend’s World Naked Bike Ride in Coventry suffered a broken elbow in an attack by masked aggressors who kicked two riders off their bikes.
The incident occurred as the group of around 40 — riding to “draw attention to the absurdity of oil and gas dependency” — made their way from the Criterion Theatre through the city.
As they approached Broomfield Road two attackers riding what appeared to be powerful electric bikes or trail dirt bikes overtook the group, kicking the event marshal and organiser Joe Swanton-Fallowell off their bikes, bringing down other riders in the process.
“I landed on my arm and immediately felt pain; I could not fully rotate my wrist and we called 999 for West Midlands Police to attend,” the marshal told road.cc.
“The attackers waited on the other side of the junction, and police originally said they would arrive immediately. Other members of the group photographed the motorcyclists, but ten minutes later the police called back to say they were not prepared to attend. The louts rode off down Albany Road, towards the city centre at around 14.15.
“There was no other abuse on the ride before that incident; we had some unsavoury muppets on social media before the ride.
“I went to Victoria Infirmary in Northwich that night. I have been in pain, and have taken pain inhibitors for the first time in 15 years. I should know this week if I need surgery on it. I have a broken radial head which is six weeks plus to heal. I cannot ride, drive or do my job.”
The marshal was left disappointed by West Midlands Police’s “unacceptable” response to the attack. “Them not catching the perpetrators, I can live with. Them not trying is unacceptable,” he said.
“I reported it later that night after being on hold for over an hour an investigating officer rang me the following day and said that they would not have chased anyone on motorbikes and that they would likely not be able to identify the attackers and would not investigate.
“I sent them the footage and they have refused to investigate, closing down my crime reference the following day. They do not care; as cyclists we are vulnerable and they could not be bothered to attend.
“We have the footage, and there are traffic cameras in Coventry — at the end of Albany Road, around 100m away — which would have captured them but it needs the police to investigate. I cannot provide them with traffic cam footage.
“They have taken a laissez-faire attitude to a violent assault on cyclists. The next time these thugs kick a cyclist from their bike it won’t be a broken elbow but something far more serious, and responsibility will lie with West Midlands Police who refused to investigate the previous attack.”
A West Midlands Police spokesperson has previously told the Coventry Telegraph: “Sadly there are no investigative opportunities at this time that allow us identify the suspect. This will have been a nasty shock for the man who came off his bike and I hope he’s not been deterred from riding.”
road.cc has contacted West Midlands Police for comment.
“My local force is brilliant and investigates every crime I have reported. If WMP wants people to leave their cars at home, then they should start policing the roads as they are obligated to do,” the marshal continued.
“Them not catching the perpetrators, I can live with. Not trying is unacceptable.
“I want to mention Joe and the rest of World Naked Bike Ride Coventry; this sort of thing does not happen on WNBR rides and they have supported me as I tried to get West Midlands Police to take this seriously. I intend to marshal at WNBR Coventry next year as you cannot let these thugs win.”