No felony charge in 47th/Admiral death

Just written up by the Northwest Asian Weekly — had not heard it before, though it appears the decision happened earlier this month: No felony charge in the crosswalk crash that killed Tatsuo Nakata.

18 Replies to "No felony charge in 47th/Admiral death"

  • el/even March 31, 2007 (2:46 am)

    WOW. The fact that the driver is a rabbi should not excuse him from DRIVING WHILE SPEAKING ON A CELL PHONE. Sorry. I do not have any sympathy for carelessness due to cell phone use. I’ve been in too many near-misses with these clueless people. What in the h’*& is so godawful important that you have to talk on the phone while operating a lethal weapon? What kind of phone conversation can possibly be a matter of life and death!!!??

  • scottjay March 31, 2007 (8:53 am)

    What a slap in the face to the family–a traffic ticket for running over someone in a crosswalk while talking on a cell phone. $135?

    I saw a guy in a gray Mercedes cruise through a red light and almost run over someone crossing the street a couple of days ago at Faunt. by the new drive through Starbucks. Never even looked up. When we passed him a block later, he was still texting on his phone.

  • Jan March 31, 2007 (12:58 pm)

    I’m sure that this may be an unpopular view, but I think the use of cell phones in a car should be unlawful. I, too, feel that there is nothing, absolutely nothing , in the world so important that it can’t wait until I’m done driving. You have voicemail, and people can leave a message. I still don’t “get” texting…just call them and leave a message, for goodness sake.

    Of course, the self-importance of these people boggles the mind. I’m so sorry for the family of this young man…a wonderful life cut short way too early because of selfishness…

  • The House March 31, 2007 (2:06 pm)

    I can’t stress the importance of paying attention while driving, but I am against anyone especially government telling me when and where I can use a cell phone. As someone that has worked in the wireless industry for 9 years and speaks on the phone in the car constantly, it is quite possible to drive safely and carry on a conversation in the car. If you use headsets, it is no different than speaking to someone sitting in your backseat. Can cell phones distract you? Of course but so does eating, drinking, putting on makeup, shaving, changing radio stations, and a multitude of other actions that people do daily in their cars (and I see it every day). The same people that posted above me probably wanted CD players banned when they first were put in vehicles because there was an uptick in accidents with people changing CDs. Selfishness, being self absorbed, or level of importance has absolutely NOTHING to do with speaking on a cell phone. It is simply a way to communicate more efficiently and effectively. By the way, during the 9 years of working in the industry and speaking day in and day out on the phone in my vehicle..I HAVE NEVER BEEN IN OR CAUSED AN ACCIDENT.

  • el/even April 1, 2007 (2:38 am)

    >>Selfishness, being self absorbed, or level of importance has absolutely NOTHING to do with speaking on a cell phone

    Sorry, House, I don’t agree with you on this one. And no, I did not want CD changers banned, or radios or food or anything else. When you are speaking on the phone with someone, you are involved in a conversation which requires you to be responsive to input over which you have no control. It requires a level of involvement and responsiveness and concentration that are not present when changing cds or even, eating a sandwich. Consider yourself lucky that you haven’t been in an accident yet, because it seems you have no awareness of your lowered attention to driving. You remind me of someone I saw zipping down the interstate at 80+ MPH while chatting merrily on the phone. There’s no way you will ever convince me that a person talking on a cell phone gives the same attention to his driving as someone who isn’t. Headsets are certainly an improvement. A drunken driver will also tell you that he isn’t impaired, as will, likely, an elderly driver. And by the way, I don’t think working in the industry factors in to this conversation. I have a friend (overseas) who has made millions many times over in the industry, and he does not / will not use his phone when driving.

  • flipjack April 1, 2007 (10:23 am)

    Good for you House, I’m glad you’ve had years of practice talking on your cellphone while driving and at least aren’t aware of any near misses or pulling out in front of people who have to break for you. Ignorance is bliss. Most people, like teenagers or technologically challenged people, (like the Rabbi) probably aren’t as adept at multitasking and don’t realize it until it’s too late.
    I’m guilty of being self important enough to use my cell phone while driving, and when I come back to the present and am off the phone, there is a distinct difference in my awareness and I realize what a dangerous game I’m playing for just a few minutes of convenience or distraction from a boring drive. Headsets aren’t really a solution either. The phone rings and you fumble frantically to put the headset in your ear in time to answer the phone…dangerous stuff. Even driving with a headset in your ear while not even using the phone is a sensory distraction. Next time you are tempted to use your phone in the car just take note of the difference in your awareness to the road and the people around you. It’s disrespectful to yourself and to others.

  • Jan April 1, 2007 (3:22 pm)

    well, I see I touched at least one person’s senses about this. Mr. House….those calls that you are on in your car…are they so important that they can’t wait 15 minutes? I’m curious, that’s all. Will your day just crumble if you don’t take it in the car while driving. I don’t care if you have a CD player….I don’t eat or drink in my car…I don’t text message, I don’t talk on my phone, I barely ever listen to the radio, I don’t go out my door without my make-up on. Granted, I work at home so don’t have an early morning commute…my make-up still only takes 5 minutes of my time usually. When I use my car it’s for going from one place to another as safely as possible. That means that I am aware of my limitations as a careful driver, and it means that I have to be constantly aware of those around me…it’s called driving defensively. I have speakerphone on my cell phone, but I rarely use it, and never in my car…to look over, get my cellphone, answer it and lay it down on my passenger seat takes just a few seconds, I realise, but those few seconds is all it takes for my attention to not be the best, for someone in front of me to slam their brakes on, for me to run into them, or for a child to run out into the street after a ball, and get hit. If you are in the wireless industry, then you are very aware that this is true, and should be pushing as much safety as possible. This isn’t a free-for-all out there…

  • The House April 1, 2007 (10:25 pm)

    We can all have our opinions on whether cell phones are good/bad. My initial concern was the fact that I don’t need the government to tell me when and where I can use a cell phone. That is an individuals choice/issue and should not be legislated…..not that I’m too worried in WA it would take them 20 years to waste taxpayers money on multiple votes on the issue just to turn it down in the end.

  • eric April 1, 2007 (10:40 pm)

    eleven sez…. ‘When you are speaking on the phone with someone, you are involved in a conversation which requires you to be responsive to input over which you have no control. ‘

    hmmm… so we should ban coversaatons wth passengers too?

    I recall one of the legislators getting caught up in this point when she was trying to explain her support of the hands free requirement and not banning eating, etc. she said it was really the conversation, not the act. If that was the case, then why is she pushing hands free use.

    Millions of people talk on cell phones while driving. Millions of people get in acciedents because they are not paying attention in one form or another. The two have nothing to do with each other.

  • Cruiser April 2, 2007 (7:39 am)


    Are you serious??

    “Millions of people talk on cell phones while driving. Millions of people get in acciedents because they are not paying attention in one form or another. The two have nothing to do with each other”

    So talking on the phone has never caused an accident?? So the rabbi knocked down and killed this poor guy because of what reason exactly??

  • Eric April 2, 2007 (9:49 am)

    All I am saying is that this is a nonsensical overreaction.

    I am not saying that people are not killed by cellphone-talkers. Many activities that take place in car and are not related to driving cause accidents – eating, putting on makeup, reading, changing radio stations, having discussions with passengers and probably about anything else.

    I think it is a safe assumption that most accidents are the result of someone not paying attention – which goes far, far beyond cell phone use.

    Cell phones are easy targets, that’s all.

    How about enforcing existing laws on inattentiveness to driving instead of making new laws to combat some perceived cause.

  • The House April 2, 2007 (11:11 am)

    Many of you above are debating with emotions, not facts (Eric excluded). You apparently want to ignore the fact that other actions cause people to not pay attention. Continue to live your lives like lemmings and requiring government to run your lives….if you drive like you debate, you’re probably correct that you should not speak on a call phone and drive. As a matter of fact stop driving all together.

    Excuse me, my cell phone is ringing.

  • Cruiser April 2, 2007 (6:08 pm)

    Fact,eh!! This poor guy is dead,that’s a fact. He was on the crosswalk,that’s a fact. The driver was using his cell,that’s a fact.

    There are soo many inattentive drivers here that they don’t need apologists to justify their inability to get from A to B without putting their lives and more importantly the lives of others in danger.

    I would never state nor imply that cell phone usage is the sole cause of accidents. There are many others as we know speed,drink,drugs,no use of turn signals,not taking weather into account whilst driving. etc etc..

    When ‘the house’ has to resort to name calling to get his point accross then you know debate is dead.

  • Claire April 3, 2007 (12:20 am)

    I recently moved back here after some years in Everett. I love this community. I noticed though as I have been walking to and from places that there seem to be more aggressive drivers than their used to be. It worries me that some drivers (maybe too many) take the attitude that if your not in a car you are trespassing on the territory of those who are if they have to slow down, stop or give you right of way of any kind, even if it is the law. Its important that the laws that are in place be supported by inforcers also. The sets a bad trend for them to just let him off with a small fine for killing someone.

  • The House April 3, 2007 (8:14 am)

    Wake up and read, Cruiser. Here is a Cliff Notes version of my conversation:

    House: I’m against government making these decisions.
    Others: Cell phones are bad.
    House: How do you justify banning cell phones w/o banning other actions?
    Others: Cell phones are bad.
    House: Millions of people speak on the phone in the car and don’t get into accident. How do you explain that?
    Others: Cell phones are bad.

    The “lemmings” statement came from multiple posts that are valid points, but all of you want to avoid. That’s when the debate was “dead”.

  • Jan April 3, 2007 (1:02 pm)

    so…House…would you ay you also don’t like the laws about seatbelts or child restraints, or bicycle helmets, etc. After all, those are the gov’t. interfering in “choice”.Some would argue that the decision to use those should be up to the people. But those laws were passed because peole weren’t making the right choices, and people were being hurt and killed…so…gov’t. stepped in because people couldn’t/wouldn’t make the right choices. I know this is a simplification…but…what is your take on that?

    I see this as hving two sides…and they are just opinions…mine and YOURS…just opinions. That doesn’t make you right and me wrong, or the other way around. We are not lemmings…we just see thngs differently than you do. I never said cell phones are bad…I don’t think anyone else did either.

  • The House April 4, 2007 (5:45 pm)

    Jan, this one made me smile becuase you’d see me vote to ban cell phones before I agreed to make wearing seathelts/wearing helmets a law. With the cell phone ban, you somewhat have an argument that their use could adversely impact others. The whole seatbelt/helmet decision DOES NOT IMPACT ANYONE EXCEPT THE INDIVIDUAL, so it should be an individuals choice not law.

    If you can’t guess….I’m all about individuals making choices and taking accountability, not being babysat by government….guess Hillary has alot of work to get my vote.

  • Jan April 5, 2007 (12:11 pm)

    House…I can agree to what you say to a point…it’s sad that so many people in our society don’t have the sense to do what is right, so gov’t does it for them.I would never ride in my car or someone else’s without a seatbelt. I would never hold a child on my lap in a car (that law DOES take care of things that do impact others). I think the idea behind those laws had to do with the long term care of people with head injuries, etc., no insurance, the burden on gov’t. to pay for those bills, etc….in other words, looking our for their pocketbook…but I could be wrong.

    I am a fairly openminded person…I have never believed that gov’t. can “legislate morality”. But when something that someone else is doing that is dangerous and does impact others? I’m all for it..

Sorry, comment time is over.