LAFAYETTE, Colo. (CBS4) – A Lafayette police officer shared his side of the story with CBS4 after a cyclist posted a confrontation with him on Facebook.
The video has been shared thousands of times, which forced the police department to publicly respond to what occurred.
Vince Marten was headed eastbound on South Boulder Road when Officer Sean Jenneiahn stopped him for riding his bike through the crosswalk at Minotaur Court. Marten recorded the incident on his cellphone and posted it to Facebook, where it went viral.
Marten: You see the light guy? That means you can cross.
Jenneiahn: But you have to walk your bike.
Marten: I’ve never had to do that before.
While Marten and Jenneiahn were arguing another cyclist rode his bike through the crosswalk.
Marten: Watch this guy; he just did the same thing!
Jenneiahn: I’m not dealing with him, I’m dealing with you.
Marten: Are you (expletive) kidding me?
Jenneiahn handcuffed Marten when he refused to cooperate, but it turns out, Marten was correct. There is no Lafayette law that requires people get off their bikes before crossing a street.
“I regret not knowing the law to the fullest,” Jenneiahn told CBS4.
“We made a mistake. We think it’s the honorable thing to do to apologize to the individual,” Police Chief Rick Bashor said.
Bashor and Jenneiahn apologized for wrongfully issuing Marten a ticket. They said Jenneiahn confused state law with local rules, and it won’t happen again.
Marten: Are you having a bad day?
Marten: Are you taking it out on me?
While Jenneiahn wrote a letter apologizing to Marten, he says Marten’s Facebook video does not tell the whole story.
“I was very polite. Most people have seen the video and know that he was trying to provoke me and I stayed very professional with him,” Jenneiahn said.
The ticket that Marten was issued will be canceled.
Marten didn’t return CBS4’s requests for comment on Wednesday but the family did acknowledge they received the officer’s apology.
Jenneiahn was also recording what happened that day through his department issued body-worn camera. CBS4 has requested a copy of the video but so far haven’t received it.