[tabi] Re: Today is a sad and shameful day

  • From: "Tinetta Cooper" <tanetjec@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <tabi@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sun, 19 Jan 2014 09:33:37 -0500

Hi Sila,


This definitely sounds like a miscarriage of justice, and I can understand how 
you and Robert now feel like second class citizens. The TPD fell down on the 
job once again when Officer Thompson failed to show up in court. I hope Mr. 
Truesdell did not celebrate his victory, because his day is coming when God 
seeks His payment!




From: tabi-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:tabi-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of 
Sila Miller
Sent: Sunday, January 19, 2014 8:48 AM
To: tabi@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Cc: fcb-l@xxxxxxx
Subject: [tabi] Today is a sad and shameful day


Good morning All,


As many may recall, Robert was struck by a semi truck while crossing a street 
here in Tallahassee, in August. The driver, doubtless, trying to save his 
commercial driver’s license contested the charge and a non-jury trial was set 
for January 15th. 


Three witnesses (including Robert BUT NOT investigating Officer Thompson who 
did not show up for court) testified at that trial about the events surrounding 
the incident. It was established by all witnesses during testimony that Robert 
was indeed obeying traffic signals. One witness stated, “The dog should have 
never left the curb”. Defendant, Wesley Truesdell testified that Robert walked 
into the truck which he’d brought to a stop when he finally saw Robert. 
Presiding Hearing Officer, Gary Roberts seemed thorough and fair to me and I 
was hopeful that the right decision would be forthcoming, as he promised to 
read the White Cane Safety law. 


Unfortunately, I couldn’t have been more wrong. Today when we went to the 
website for Leon County Traffic Court, we found that case #2013 TR 037367 
against Defendant: Wesley Truesdell was DISMISSED. 


I amended to Robert’s early August message which basically outlines events as 
they unfolded for him. I do not know if the White Cane Safety law has ever been 
challenged in court before but I am afraid that this will set precedence for a 
safe future for blind pedestrians. I am appalled at decisions made by law 
enforcers who are supposed to protect the rights, not privileges of citizens. I 
have, and will maintain that driving is a privilege, while walking (crossing 
streets) safely is a right. 


Any recourse is gone now, as re-charging Mr. Truesdell would be 
double-jeopardy. I could not feel more like a second-class citizen or less 
protected by authorities. What of the Mayor’s White Cane proclamation in 
October? What of Sherman’s medal of valor? How could someone “walk into a 
truck” and get a bruise on the area of the upper-arm as Robert had? What of Mr. 
Truesdell’s change in story which caused Tallahassee Police personnel to decide 
to charge him after all? Is the investigating officer’s absence (lack of 
testimony) representative that the police department actually believes Mr. 
Truesdell is not at fault? Is Robert’s persistence in demanding that Mr. 
Truesdell be charged with the White Cane Safety law and upsetting Officer 
Thompson who wasn’t going to charge Mr. Truesdell with a violation an excuse 
for not upholding the White Cane Safety law, clearly broken, even if Robert 
“walked into that truck”? Am I reading the White Cane Safety law incorrectly to 
believe that the driver is at fault for entering the intersection while a blind 
pedestrian was in process of crossing with a guide dog?




----- Original Message ----- 

From: Easy Talk <mailto:Easytalk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>  

To: Kirk Harmon <mailto:kvharmon54@xxxxxxxxx>  ; Mike Ulrich 

Cc: fcb-l@xxxxxxx 

Sent: Monday, August 05, 2013 5:49 AM

Subject: Re: [fcb-l] Fw: [tabi] Blind Tallahassee Man Has A Brush With DeathAt 
An Intersection


Just getting law enforcement to be aware of the White Cane law would be a major 
step and more important is getting them to have the right attitude.  In both 
cases where I was hit I had to demand that the driver be charged with violating 
the White cane law.  As soon as you ask the officer if they are aware of the 
law, they get defensive and cop the attitude that you are trying to tell them 
how to do there job.  The first time I was hit, the officer did charge the 
driver but when I got home, I got a call from the officer and he told me he was 
going to resend the ticket since the driver of the car behind the one that hit 
me saw me push the wrong button.  In my most recent situation, the officer told 
me she wasn't going to site the driver since he was driving a semi and they 
take more room to make a turn  and he was already making his turn when I 
started to cross the street which was a lie.

 The street I was crossing was 3 lanes and I was almost across the second lane 
and approaching the third lane when he made a rolling right turn on green.at 
which point when Sherman stopped, I was about 18 inches from the truck, As I 
was cursing the driver, a blinker sticking out about mid ways of the trailer 
hit me on the back of my right arm and knocked me down since I had Sherman's 
leash in my right hand.

At some point I transferred Sherman's leash to my left hand and as I was 
falling, Sherman pulled me back and to the left which is what kept me from 
going under the truck.  The first thing the driver said when he got out of his 
truck was, I didn't see you man, I'm sorry.  By the time the officer arrived on 
the scene The driver figured out, it wouldn't be a good thing to tell the cop 
he didn't see me so he told her he saw me waiting to cross the street but he 
was already making his turn and basically I walked in to the side of his truck.


When I tried to explain all this to the officer, she was having no part of it 
and kept saying what the other witnesses said of which there were 3 other than 
the driver and the 3 witnesses certainly didn't say to me what the officer was 
saying so I ask her what witnesses she was referring to and she said she was 
talking about the driver of the truck.  I ask her what about what I was telling 
her, that I was a witness and I was there and I was still alive.  I certainly 
got the impression she thought since I couldn't see I wasn't a credible 
witness.  This pissed me off and so I told her, lets look at the evidence and 
explained to her based on where I was hit by the blinker and   where I was in 
the road there is no way the accident could have happened the way the driver 
said it did. After standing out in the sun for 45 minutes while the cop was in 
her car talking to her sergeant and dispatch, she came back and I ask her if 
she had read the white cane law she said yes.  I then ask her if she was going 
to site the driver and she said no.  She said I was free to go.  I told her she 
hadn't heard the last of this and when I got home, I called the police 
department and spoke to SGT Simms and explained basically what I have posted 
here and he backed the officer's decision and even inferred for some time she 
didn't even know I was blind and the driver didn't either.  I informed SGT 
Simms they would be hearing from my attorney.  I called back a few minutes 
later to request a copy of the police report and by that time things had 
changed and I was informed that the driver had been sited for violating the 
White Cane law but they weren't going to site him for violation of the 
pedestrian safety law.


Until we get the legislation passed we have been trying for the last 3 years 
each incident will be your own battle but isn't going to do anything to change 
things state wide.


If you want to read how screwed up what some sighted people thing about blind 
people and the White Cane law, go to wctv.tv and open the link to the article 
and then hit space bar on the like button.  the comments start after the third 
header on the page.





       ----- Original Message ----- 

From: Kirk Harmon <mailto:kvharmon54@xxxxxxxxx>  

To: Mike Ulrich <mailto:mulrich@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>  

Cc: Easy Talk <mailto:Easytalk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>  ;  <mailto:fcb-l@xxxxxxx%3e> 

Sent: Sunday, August 04, 2013 8:05 PM

Subject: Re: [fcb-l] Fw: [tabi] Blind Tallahassee Man Has A Brush With Death At 
An Intersection


Good for you Mike! As far as you your quest for solid white miniature candy 
canes attach to the law we did that in Orlando many many years ago when we went 
back to do it for the last time the manufacture of the candy canes that gave us 
white candy canes a quick Mcmanimon know we could get was the red and white or 
gray and whiiings. Good luck to you as I worked  hard on finding another 
manufacturer that would provide us with a solid white miniatur to no avail. As 
far as getting the public To become familiar with the Whit can e law, it will 
be in matter of consistency 
by our law enforcement community to site people when they make the infraction 
of this law and to continue doing so here and you're out it is also a wise 
idea, I believe, to educate the new young drivers through high schools etc.. 
Consistency in longevity yin my opinion through these law enforcement efforts 
will be the only way people will actually realize this law is there to be 
followed I believe also we will save many many lives in the long run. Kudo to 
your efforts, Kirk
Sent from my iPhone

On Aug 4, 2013, at 7:35 PM, "Mike Ulrich" <mulrich@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

Holy cow Robert!

Glad to have you back among the living breathing and still walking!


Speaking of Too close for comfort close calls, I will be working with our City 
of Cape Coral Police Department’s Public Affairs Officer; Lieutenant Tony 
Sizemore with a new program.

This will be a program in which the traffic officers will be handing out 
warnings to motorists breaking the right turn on red law, and blocking of 
Pedestrian cross walks, that is, stopping past the stop bar.

At least this is where it stands as of now. I intend on bumping it up to 
include educating the driving public on the White Cane Law of Florida. But it 
is now at the first step of the poker game! Know what I mean?

What I’d really like to do, is to get the officers to hand out a card with the 
Florida White Cane Law printed on it along with a kind of candy cane type  
candy, but  shaped like a white cane!

I’m having a hard time locating a candy making company that could make these 
White Cane candies in bulk, at either a pro-bono price or at as little price as 



The Police Department will be blasting out this program to all of its Social 
Networks and through the local media outlets as a program of the Cape Coral 
Police Department  in cooperation with the Southwest Florida Council of the 

They will be doing this program  as a two pronged approach. Starting right now, 
and during the week of October 15 National White Cane Safety Week!


I am looking very much forward to working with the CCPD with this whole 
program, but it all depends on the driving public actually remembering not only 
the White Cane Law, but to look out for all pedestrians in general, and that’s 
always the big crap shoot! Ain’t it?



Good luck to all, and let’s be careful out there!........Mike


Michael D. Ulrich


Southwest Florida Council of the Blind

“Providing Insight for Blindness”

Home phone: 239-540-7431

Cell phone: 239-565-5845

Email: mulrich@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx




From: fcb-l-bounces@xxxxxxx [mailto:fcb-l-bounces@xxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Easy 
Sent: Sunday, August 04, 2013 8:07 AM
To: fcb-l@xxxxxxx
Subject: [fcb-l] Fw: [tabi] Blind Tallahassee Man Has A Brush With Death At An 



----- Original Message ----- 

From:  <mailto:Easytalk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> Easy Talk 

To:  <mailto:tabi@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> tabi@xxxxxxxxxxxxx 

Sent: Sunday, August 04, 2013 7:58 AM

Subject: [tabi] Blind Tallahassee Man Has A Brush With Death At An Intersection 


 Blind Tallahassee Man Has A Brush With Death At An Intersection 8-3-13 11pm
By: Bailey Myers
August 3rd, 2013
Tallahassee FL - A blind Tallahassee man had a brush with death Saturday at the 
of Killearn Center Boulevard and Village Square.
Robert Miller explained, "If it wasn't for him...um...you would be doing a 
It's a story about his seeing eye dog, Sherman, who saved his life. Robert 
has been blind since he was born, and has depended on his seeing eye dogs since 
was seventeen, but on Saturday that bond between man and dog was tested.
"He lunged to the left and back, pulling me away from the truck," Miller said.
Miller also said Sherman stopped him in the middle of the cross walk before a 
rounding the corner was able to fully hit him. Instead it only hit his right 
knocking him over in the middle of the intersection.
"And I've been hit twice at that intersection, and it could very well have cost 
my life," said Miller.
Both Miller and his wife Sila, who is also legally blind, take that walk every 
Hoping that people obey the traffic laws.
Particularly one law, Florida's White Cane Law, which states: "Whenever a 
is crossing... guided by a dog guide or carrying in a raised or extended 
a cane... the driver of every vehicle approaching the intersection...shall bring
his or her vehicle to a full stop. "
The difficulty is, it doesn't seem like many people know about the law. When 
'Have you ever hear of the white cane law' one passer by said, "No I've never 
of that."
Eyewitness News Reporter Bailey Myers asked more than a dozen passersby, and 
all had the same answer, 'No, I don't know it.'
According to Miller even the police officer who arrived after he was hit didn't 
about it either.
Robert's wife Sila Miller said, "It's very frustrating when your independence is
compromised like that by someone just being in a hurry or not paying attention."
Both of the Millers have been hit by a car at that intersection. Now, they just 
Florida's Legislature addresses the issue and work to get the word out about the
White Cane Law.

fcb-l mailing list


fcb-l mailing list

Other related posts: