Driver who intentionally hit bicyclist in Uptown gets 2-year sentence

A Chicago man has pleaded guilty to aggravated battery with a deadly weapon for intentionally driving into a bicyclist during a road rage dispute in Uptown last year, according to court records. Lenard Cribbs, 21, also pleaded guilty to a separate misdemeanor gun violation, which was plead down from a felony.

Cribbs will not spend any time in prison after receiving credit for the year he spent on electronic monitoring.

On April 7, 2021, the victim was riding in the bike lane on the 1000 block of West Wilson when he came upon several cars at a stoplight. As he slowed down to pass the cars, a red Ford sedan drove into the bike lane and nearly struck him, Assistant State’s Attorney Brian Burkhardt said during a bond hearing last year.

Lenard Cribbs | CPD; Google

The bicyclist threw his hands up, asked the driver what he was doing, and then continued riding westbound. Suddenly, the Ford came speeding up in the bike lane behind the cyclist, striking the back end of the bike with enough force to “crush” it, according to Burkhardt. A CPD surveillance camera recorded the incident.

Two witnesses in another car called 911 and followed the Ford until police caught up with them and pulled Cribbs over.

EMS took the victim to Swedish Hospital with a mild concussion and injuries to his right elbow and lower back, Burkhardt said.

Less than a month earlier, Cribbs was released on a recognizance bond after prosecutors charged him with aggravated unlawful use of a weapon. Police said he admitted that a gun they found in a backpack during a traffic stop belonged to him.

Cribbs reached a deal with prosecutors and pleaded guilty to the aggravated battery charge and the reduced gun count this month.

Judge Thomas Byrne sentenced him to two years for striking the bicyclist and 364 days for the gun offense. The two-year sentence was reduced by 50% per state law. Electronic monitoring credits offset both jail sentences, records show.

Cribbs reported to Stateville Correctional Center on April 14 and was released the same day, according to the Illinois Department of Corrections website.

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