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Woman denies grabbing fmr. Minister before devastating bicycle fall

Internashonal

Woman denies grabbing fmr. Minister before devastating bicycle fall


The 44-year-old woman who was involved in the fall of cycling Sander Dekker in the dune area near Monster, Zuid-Holland, in June 2022 denied in court that she had grabbed the arm of the former Minister for Legal Protection. The Public Prosecution Service (OM) demanded 240 hours of community service and a fully suspended prison sentence of six months against her in the court in The Hague on Tuesday.

On 7 June 2022, Dekker and his partner cycled in the dunes. The cyclists were going downhill at a speed of 37 kilometers per hour towards pedestrian Aathina K. and her husband. Dekker fell, breaking his pelvis, shoulder blade, and collarbone and suffering a severe concussion. He had 15 fractures and can’t remember the accident. Eyewitnesses said that Dekker fell because the woman from Monster had grabbed his arm.

K. denied grabbing the former Minister’s arm. She said in court that she only made a defensive gesture because she thought the two cyclists were going too fast on a path with little space. She wanted to protect herself, she said, and accidentally touched Dekker with that gesture.

“As far as I know, he continued cycling. I looked back because I was in shock that I had almost been hit. I saw that he also looked back. We continued walking. Then we heard a huge crash,” she told the judge.

Dekker used his right to speak in court. “I know how vulnerable cyclists are and am careful in traffic. Why did it go wrong here? Why did they walk on the cycle path and next to each other instead of one after the other? It could have happened to anyone. I do not believe that the lady specifically targeted me. It does show that a rash action in traffic can have major consequences. Another person’s reckless behavior can have disastrous consequences. Next time, it could be someone else.”

“I find it terrible how much sadness and pain this accident caused,” K. responded. “I would like to express my condolences here and apologize for everything that happened.”

In court on Tuesday, the OM demanded 240 hours of community service and a fully suspended prison sentence of six months against K. According to the prosecutor, K. was irritated by the speeding cyclists while she was the one walking on the bike path instead of the adjacent footpath. “In a moment of thoughtlessness, she grabbed Dekker by the upper arm. It was an impulsive action with far-reaching consequences.”

According to the prosecutor, the woman from Monster is guilty of assault, causing serious bodily injury. The prosecutor stressed the severity of the facts and the consequences. As far as he is concerned, the sentence demand is also a warning for road users. “Keep your irritations to yourself.”



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