A 77-year-old man convicted of felony drunken driving for striking and severely injuring Menlo Park bicyclist MaryAnn Levenson was sentenced Friday to eight months in county jail and taken into custody immediately.
Walter Sorensen of Hillsborough was driving the pickup truck that struck Ms. Levenson, then 48, on Sand Hill Road just east of the Interstate 280 interchange on Dec. 23, 2006.
He avoided a jury trial by agreeing to plead "no contest" to a conviction of felony drunken driving, said San Mateo County Deputy District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe.
In addition to the jail time, the sentence includes five years of probation, 300 hours of community service, and $366,000 in restitution, of which the insurance company paid $100,000 and his family the rest.
His driver's license was revoked for five years.
Ms. Levenson was hit from behind while riding in the eastbound bike lane on Sand Hill Road just east of the Interstate 280 interchange.
The truck dragged her some 35 feet. Among her extensive injuries: a fractured pelvis, broken vertebrae, a shattered larynx and extensive damage to one of her feet, part of which had to be reattached.
Her severe physical trauma was no contest for her hardy spirit: Ms. Levenson was back up and racing less than three months later.
She is now a member of Menlo Park's Bicycle Commission, which advises the City Council on existing and planned bike facilities in the city.
See the next edition of The Almanac for more details.