Demonstrators March Through Santa Monica Crosswalk to Protest Safety Issues and Mourn Clinton Bounds

Demonstrators Sunday at the crosswalk on Santa Monica Boulevard at Hancock (Photo courtesy Joseph G. Daniels / JGD Productions)
Demonstrators Sunday at the crosswalk on Santa Monica Boulevard at Hancock (Photo courtesy Joseph G. Daniels / JGD Productions)

More than 50 people gathered at the pedestrian crosswalk on Santa Monica Boulevard at Hancock Avenue this evening to protest what they contend is the city’s failure to take adequate steps to improve crosswalk safety.

clinton bounds, crosswalk accident, west hollywood
Clinton Bounds

For nearly an hour, the protestors marched back and forth across the crosswalk, holding signs with slogans such as “Unsafe,” “No More Deaths” and “R.I.P. Clint.” The latter was a reference to Clinton Bounds, who died after being hit by a car on Santa Monica Boulevard near the crosswalk around 11 p.m. Saturday. Bounds’ death is what sparked the demonstration, which was organized by Ron Davis with the support of Cross Safe WeHo, a citizens group that was formed after a man was injured when a car hit him in the crosswalk on Santa Monica Boulevard near Westmount in June.

While Bounds originally was thought to have been in the crosswalk when he was hit by a car, photos of the scene and eyewitness accounts of the accident provided to WEHOville indicate that he likely was jaywalking by crossing Santa Monica Boulevard about one hundred feet east of the pedestrian crosswalk.

Crosswalk safety has emerged as a major issue although the accident at the Santa Monica Boulevard / Westmount crosswalk in June has been the only one thus far this year in West Hollywood. Nevertheless, local activists and commenters on WEHOville have complained about drivers who don’t pay attention when they enter pedestrian crosswalks and pedestrians who seem oblivious to traffic — often focused on their cell phones — when they enter crosswalks. The West Hollywood Sheriff’s Station on Aug. 3 conducted a crosswalk safety exercise that resulted in about 40 tickets being issued to drivers and 17 to pedestrians. About half of the tickets issued to motorists were for failure to yield to pedestrians and half were for distracted driving (i.e. driving while texting).

Last year there were four accidents involving pedestrians and one involving a bicyclist in the crosswalk at Hancock Avenue. At a recent City Council meeting, City Manager Paul Arevalo said there have been 71 accidents involving pedestrians and bicyclists in the past three and a half years in West Hollywood. The peak year was 2012, when there were 21. Most accidents occurred in designated crosswalks, Arevalo said.

An impromptu memorial to Clinton Bounds, who was killed Saturday crossing Santa Monica Boulevard. (Photo by Joseph G. Daniels / JGD Productions)
An impromptu memorial to Clinton Bounds, who was killed Saturday crossing Santa Monica Boulevard. (Photo courtesy Joseph G. Daniels / JGD Productions)

In addition to the demonstrators, many of whom were friends or acquaintances of Bounds, West Hollywood Mayor John D’Amico participated in the crosswalk march as did Lauren Meister and Larry Block, both declared candidates in the 2015 City Council election. Also present was Tristan Schukraft, a candidate in the 2013 Council election who is rumored to be considering a run for 2015. Demonstrators complained that none of the other four members of the Council appeared at the demonstration. D’Amico said they he was considering recommending that the city reduce the speed limit on that stretch of Santa Monica Boulevard, currently 35 miles per hour, to 25 miles per hour late at night when the bars and restaurants in that largely gay neighborhood are busy.

The demonstration was monitored by Lt. David Smith of the West Hollywood Sheriff’s Station. Demonstrators paused at each crossing of Santa Monica Boulevard to let backed up traffic move. One driver, who shouted an obscenity at the demonstrators, was pulled over by Smith for questioning.

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Romanoff
Romanoff
5 years ago

Wow Don Azars, you are a very scary individual. You sound like the type who will go to someone’s house, trip and sue them.
How is it a vehicle’s fault if a drunken idiot (NOT talking about anyone specifically!!) stumbles into a dark road outside of a crosswalk and gets hit?
Let’s publicize all the names of the morons crossing SMB on a typical Saturday night.

Don Azars
Don Azars
5 years ago

Jaywalking or not, Pedestrians have the right of way. I have yet to see what legal action has been taken against the person who drove their car into Clinton Bounds. IF the law correctly prosecutes them, it should be publicized and become a warning against ALL DRIVERS that murder by car is not tolerated regardless of the crosswalk, the status of the pedestrian or any other excuses.

Chris Sanger
Chris Sanger
5 years ago

Scott, respecting the expressed wishes of others here, I will no longer press you to answer the question you refuse to answer. I respect the sincerity of your beliefs, even if we disagree. I deeply resent your deeply ugly name calling and the suggestion that my opinions aren’t equally sincere and valid.

Otherwise, I am done with you.

scott
scott
5 years ago

I hate to say this chris but you are exhibiting a “dumbness”. not only did I answer your question with a preponderance of information but so did most of the other people who posted here. you don’t seem to get it. you are so preoccupied with an agenda to be a lap dog for city council that you cant understand the situation. its not your fault, you are victim to a condition where your allegiance to an organization prevents you from thinking clearly much like the jim jones victims. I offered to pay for lights at crosswalks ten years ago… Read more »

R. J. Cefai
5 years ago

What’s done is done. Many heated emotions here. Clint is dead. Stop bitching at each other and hope the city of West Hollywood does the right thing. Enough already. Stop.

Paul
Paul
5 years ago

Miss Clint !! A human life was taken by an accident , may it be whomever was in the wrong a human being was killed ! He was a very good friend , person and did not deserve to go this way ! Very tragic and Clint will never be forgotten too ME ! I personally will miss MY FRIEND CLINT !

Chris Sanger
Chris Sanger
5 years ago

Nice try, sport, but you didn’t answer my question. How would more lights in the cross walk have anything to do with someone who on the basis of available evidence was jaywalking? This has nothing to do with whom I might vote in the next election. But apparently everything that goes wrong in this city, even if as in this case if the cause was jaywalking has NOTHING to do with the council, the kneejerk reaction is to exploit the issue for political gain. At some point, it becomes shameless. And it is what turns off open-minded progressive residents of… Read more »

scott
scott
5 years ago

the best thing that can happen in clintons family sues for 50 million dollars….money talks and causes change. when you have to write a check for that amount you might think about making change.

scott
scott
5 years ago

more lights in the crosswalks. hows that for an answer to your question? at some point you will lose someone you love (if you can love) and you will know what its like and you will stop being so cold-hearted. its amazing that so many people like you cannot think rationally and cannot distance yourself from your blind support of the city council. just don’t drink the Kool-Aid if they ask you to . I guess its the difference between my life experience serving my country, working 70 hours a week, donating my time and money to volunteer work, feeding… Read more »

Chris Sanger
Chris Sanger
5 years ago

Scott, I can equally claim that you are a shill for the council or the sheriff’s dept. Nobody here is making people less sympathetic to your cause than you, and maybe you are being paid to make the anti-council side look ridiculous. If not, they are getting your help for free. To claim that people who disagree with you are shills is pathetic and disrespectful. It makes enemies for your cause, not friends. It would be nice if Larry Block would speak up and explain that he disassociates himself from voices and opinions like yours. After all, he wants to… Read more »

scott
scott
5 years ago

wow. its amazing that the city puts these people up to being shills. it will not change the opinion of voters in the voting booth no matter how much you have been told to write positive comments about the city……..its funny though that you say nothing about the sherrifs department….that speaks volumes

Romanoff
Romanoff
5 years ago

Wow Scott, the gall of thinking you’re the only one who has experienced loss. I have experienced loss that I feel is greater than yours therefore it’s YOU who doesn’t understand. Personal responsibility, despite grief, sadness, wrong-doing still is most important in this debate. The fact that something makes you sad doesn’t automatcially assign the blame to the other side who may or may not be at fault. No one knows all the facts yet, but if he was hit outside of the cross-walk, I genuinely feel so horrible for this person who because of someones carelessness, has permanently scarred… Read more »

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