Man handcuffed for taping scene after Detroit worker hits bicyclist with city vehicle

DWSD investigating

Man handcuffed for taping scene after bicyclist struck by DWSD worker

DETROIT – A Detroit Water and Sewerage Department worker is accused of hitting a bicyclist while behind the wheel of a city truck Wednesday.

Roger Paz witnessed the incident and recorded the aftermath with his cellphone, and he said he was put in handcuffs for doing so. 

The incident happened on Vernor Highway near West Grand Boulevard in southwest Detroit. DWSD has launched an investigation into the incident.

"Hey, guys, look. Film this. Right now. Arresting me for filming a bicycle accident," Paz said in the video.

The DWSD truck was going the wrong way on a one-way street. A 47-year-old woman on her bicycle stopped for the wrong-way driver.

"The lady stopped on her bike. He gave the go-ahead and then lurched and drove over her," Paz said.

Paz and others, like Ashley Attar, were worried about the woman, and they got their cellphones out when the DWSD driver did not look OK to them.

"He was chugging water after this all happened," Attar said.

Sources tell Local 4 that the driver's blood was drawn and he tested negative for alcohol and drugs. When Paz tried to get footage of the DWSD license plate, he said police told him he was interfering with a police investigation and he was handcuffed and given a ticket.

"Now it's illegible. A ticket for disobeying a lawful order for trying to document this city worker running over this 47-year-old woman," Paz said.

"It discourages you from helping the police," Paz said. "That night, all I could think of was, 'Wow, that's the last time I care.'"

DWSD released the following statement:

"The Detroit Water and Sewerage Department is hopeful the pedestrian will make a full recovery. We are investigating the accident and cannot comment further at this time. While under this investigation, the DWSD employee is not allowed to drive any department vehicles."

About the Authors:

Local 4 Defender Shawn Ley is an Emmy award-winning journalist who has been with Local 4 News for more than a decade.

Kayla is a Web Producer for ClickOnDetroit. Before she joined the team in 2018 she worked at WILX in Lansing as a digital producer.