Richard A. Austin Sentenced For Hitting, Killing Bicyclist David Haywood Williams Jr. On Southern Avenue

3:34 PM, Jul 20, 2012   |    comments
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WASHINGTON (WUSA) -- A Forestville man has been sentenced for striking and killing a bicyclist on Southern Avenue in 2010. 

Fifty-two-year-old Richard A. Austin of Forestville, Md. was sentenced Friday to 14 months in prison on a charge of negligent homicide. Austin will also be placed on three years of supervised release. 

He pleaded guilty in May 2012 in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia. At the plea hearing, Austin admitted that he was driving his Chevrolet Suburban sport utility vehicle at about 10:30 p.m. on June 4, 2010, along Southern Avenue. Forty-year-old David Haywood Williams Jr. was riding a bicycle in the same direction in the 1400 block of Southern Avenue. Austin drove up to Williams from behind and struck him with his SUV. Williams was thrown from his bicycle and landed on the roadway of Southern Avenue.

Austin continued to drive on Southern Avenue, stopping on 12th Street SE, about two blocks away.


A witness reported seeing the SUV traveling on Southern Avenue prior to, during, and after striking Williams. The witness stated that the driver appeared to be traveling faster than the 30 mph speed limit, and that the vehicle did not slow or stop before, during, or after striking Williams.

The witness stated that Williams appeared to be unconscious  on the pavement. He was then hit by another car moments later.

The witness called 911. An ambulance took Williams to Prince George's County Hospital Center where he was pronounced dead.

Austin returned on foot to the 1400 block of Southern Avenue and admitted to officers that he had struck Mr. Williams. A search of the Airbag Control Module (ACM) of the SUV revealed that Austin was driving 75 mph approximately one second prior to striking Mr. Williams. The ACM also recorded no braking for the previous eight seconds prior to impact.

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