COLLIER COUNTY, Fla.- Drivers can now face charges for threatening cyclists and runners. Commissioners passed the anti-harassment ordinance on Tuesday, making it the first of its kind in Florida.
Starting now, honking, throwing things, or threatening those who share the road could land drivers behind bars.
Collier County Sheriff Kevin Rambosk supports the move telling commissioners, “the ordinance you are considering today…will provide an additional tool for keeping Collier County roads safer.”
Just last week, a cyclist captured video on his GoPro as he was riding to work on Trade Center Way. In the video the driver of a white truck honks at the cyclist, swerves around him and stops. The driver gets out of his truck and starts shouting at the man on his bike.
WINK News has learned the sheriff’s office determined the it doesn’t appear the driver did anything criminal even though his behavior was rude and disturbing.
“There is a right, a designated lane for bikers, and vehicles usually in this county have two to three lanes to get away from that bicyclists,” said Taylor Hartsfield of Naples.
Although most drivers we talked to applaud the county for putting the ordinance into place, one driver tells WINK News cyclists, runners and pedestrians should also be held accountable.
“If they’re not supposed to be where they should be, then same as a driver and get cited” said Steven Bishop.
The sheriff’s office tells WINK News they have to see the violation to be able to take action. Otherwise, the case will go to the State Attorney’s Office for investigation.