Charges Filed Against Driver Who Tried to Run Down Cyclist

By Jonah Spangenthal-Lee December 1, 2011

King County prosecutors have filed charges against a 29-year-old Seattle man for allegedly trying to run down a cyclist in Greenwood after the cyclist refused to buy the man a beer.

According to court records, the cyclist was playing pool at the Triangle Tavern on 97th and Greenwood Ave. N. back in May, and had brought his bike inside the bar.

Another man, identified by prosecutors as Mareko Lemafa, struck up a conversation with the victim about his bike, and the two men then played pool together for an hour and a half.

During their game, Lemafa kept trying to get the victim to buy him a Budweiser, court records say, but the victim refused and left the bar.

The victim was riding his bike—a yellow 10-speed Specialized—home along Greenwood Ave. when he heard a car approaching behind him.

The driver struck the victim's rear bike tire, popping it and pushing him five to ten feet down the street.

The victim—who later told police he saw Lemafa driving the car—jumped off his bike before Lemafa allegedly ran it over and drove off, court records say.

Later that day, the victim saw Lemafa's car parked in front of a home in Greenwood and called police. Officers came and arrested Lemafa and booked him into the King County Jail.

Court records say Lemafa—who is facing a second-degree assault charge—has prior convictions for reckless driving, driving with a suspended license, hit and run, and negligent driving.

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