CLAREMONT (CBSLA) — Hundreds came out tonight to honor a cyclist they say was intentionally run over by a driver.
Police say Leslie Pray was struck Saturday morning in Claremont. Hundreds visited the site on Mills Ave. to pay their respects.
Pray’s life partner, Betsey Hipple, acknowledged the crowd just two days after she lost the woman with whom she spent nine years.
“I cherished her. She was a profoundly gentle soul,” she said. “I think I’ll have a sadness and carry a big gaping hole in my heart for the rest of my life.”
Several other cyclists reported that Sandra Wicksted had tried to hit them Saturday morning before police say Wicksted crossed the road and ran into Pray in the bike lane.
The impact sent her across a yard and into a driveway, where she died. Wickstead was arrested and charged with murder.
“Our investigation shows it was an intentional act and it was completely senseless,” said Claremont Police Chief Shelley Vander Veen.
Other cyclists say drivers take aim at them more often that you’d think.
“Many times. [They] throw things at you, swerve at you, hit you with their hands as they’re driving by,” cyclist Ken Kramer said.
That’s why so many rode to Pray’s vigil and organized a white ghost bike to rest at a tree in her memory.
Pray had just rekindled her passion for cycling this summer after 25 years.
The suspect’s bail was set at $2 million. She is expected to appear in court Tuesday.