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Doctor charged with injuring bicyclists in road rage incident

Posted on Oct 22, 2009

Mandeville Canyon Road in Brentwood is a scenic, two-lane, dead-end street popular with bicyclists.  On July 4, 2008, Christian Stoehr and his cycling partner, Ron Peterson, were taking part in a Fourth of July ride. They had fallen behind the group to assist an injured cyclist.  As they were riding down the hill, they heard a speeding car honk behind them. Stoehr and Peterson moved into single file, so the driver could pass. As the car passed, there was an angry exchange of words. The driver then pulled in front of them and suddenly braked.
Stoehr and Peterson were unable to stop. They hit the car, an Infiniti sedan. Stoehr catapulted over the car and into the other lane.  His injuries included a shoulder separation that required major surgery.  Peterson crashed through the rear window. He broke his nose which was almost severed from his face. It took more than 90 stitches to reattach it. He also shattered several teeth.
The driver, 60-year-old Christopher Thomas Thompson was charged with one count of reckless driving causing injury and two felony counts of battery with serious injury.  Thompson, a former emergency room physician, is currently on trial in Los Angeles Superior Court.
In the preliminary hearing, an LAPD traffic investigator testified that Thompson said he had deliberately “stopped in front to teach them a lesson.”  Thompson had been involved in two earlier incidents involving cyclists.   
If convicted, Thompson may face up to five years in state prison for the bicycle accident.

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