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Biker allegedly at center of SUV attack goes before judge

October 6, 2013 8:33:16 PM PDT
This weekend, two bikers have been arraigned and charged, and more arrests are likely to come in the SUV incident on the West Side Highway.

Detectives at the 33rd Precinct are continuing their investigation and have released more photos of suspects wanted in connection to the assault.

Police say the men played a role in the assault of Alexian Lien last Sunday ? a biker road rage incident that ended with Lien and his wife getting pulled from their Range Rover.

One of the main suspects in the case, 37-year-old Reginald Chance was arraigned in criminal court Sunday on charges of gang assault, criminal possession of a weapon and criminal mischief.

Chance can be seen in the YouTube video smashing the driver's side window of the Range Rover with his helmet.

"We concede the criminal mischief. It's obvious he overreacted, but the law does permit someone who is victim of an accident to attempt to get the identification of the motorist, and my client obviously overreacted in that manner," said Chance's attorney, Gregory Watts.

Watts contends his client did not beat up Lien.

"He did not assault anyone. He did not kick anyone or punch anyone, or did he authorize anyone to do any of those things," Watts adds.

On Saturday, 35-year-old Robert Sims was also arraigned on charges of assault and weapons possession. Police say Sims is the biker who tried to pull open the driver's side door to the SUV and fled up the West Side Highway.

Like Chance's attorney, Sims' lawyer, Luther Williams says his client did not participate in the assault.

"It appears to me they're trying to indict everyone as doing something illegal," says Williams.

The NYPD is investigating why two off-duty cops riding with the biker group did not stop the beating from happening. One was an undercover narcotics cop, who sources say did not get involved for fear of blowing his cover.

The NYPD is also investigating reports that 3 off-duty cops may have been nearby to the attack.

Detectives are also looking at about a half dozen other bikers who may have had a role in the assault of the driver. Some have already been interviewed by investigators after being identified by video and photographs that have been coming in. Investigators are interviewing as many motorcyclists as possible to determine their roles before filing charges.

"This is a complex investigation with a lot of people involved," a source said.

Dayana Mejia cried during a press conference in New York City. Mejia says her partner and a biker left paralyzed in the confrontation, 32-year-old Edwin Mieses Jr., is an adoring father to the couple's two children.

"I love him so much it tears me up that anyone could think that Edwin in any way deserves what happened to him," she said.

Mejia says the people who participated in the motorcycle ride are "not thugs."

Gloria Allred, Mieses' attorney, says he was trying to "calm people down" when the SUV hit him on Sunday.

Video shows the SUV surrounded by dozens of helmeted riders. The driver, Alexian Lien, drove through the crowd and struck Mieses.

Police want to speak with two bystanders about what happened, and they have released images of the witnesses.

CLICK HERE TO SEE THE PHOTOS.

Everything started when the Range Rover bumped a biker on the Henry Hudson Parkway. As motorcyclists gathered around Lien's vehicle, he took off, running over Edwin Mieses and sparking the chase and vicious assault that followed.

CLICK HERE TO SEE NEW PHOTOS OF THE SUV

Bikers insist that Lien was the aggressor.

"He drove erratically and bumped the bike on the side," one biker said. "When he bumped that bike on the side, that bike became aggressive because his life was in danger."

Lien's wife, Rosalyn Ng, explained why her husband fled the scene and inadvertently drove over Mieses, saying their lives were put in grave danger.

"We were faced with a life-threatening situation, and my husband was forced under the circumstances to take the actions that he did in order to protect the lives of our entire family," Ng said.

She said her family's sympathies went out to Mieses, who broke both legs and suffered spinal injuries that may leave him paralyzed, but said there was no other option than to flee.

"Our fear for our lives was confirmed when the incident ended with the ruthless and brutal attack on my husband, me, and, most importantly, our 2-year-old child," Ng said. "We know in our hearts that we could not have done anything differently, and we believe that anyone faced with this sort of grave danger would have taken the same course of action in order to protect their family."

CLICK HERE for the full text of the statement

The biker involved in the initial accident, Christopher Cruz, is charged with reckless driving and unlawful imprisonment. Prosecutors served notice that they intend to take the case against Cruz to a grand jury, a sign that more serious charges are likely.

A second suspect, Allen Edwards, 42, of Jamaica, Queens, surrendered to police at the 33rd Precinct Tuesday night. It is believed he is the man who punched the rear window of the SUV with his fists at the end of the video.

He was held and questioned, and police initially said he would be charged with reckless endangerment, criminal mischief and menacing. But the office declined to prosecute at this time, pending further investigation of the entire incident.

Anyone with information regarding the incident is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477).

ONLINE:
Click here to watch the video on YouTube.


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