ABC7 security guard catches wrong-way driver who allegedly struck bicyclist

CHICAGO (WLS) -- A bicyclist was struck by a wrong-way driver who tried to get away in Chicago's Loop late Wednesday night, police said. But a quick-thinking ABC7 security guard stopped him.

The driver was allegedly heading the wrong way on West Wacker Drive when he hit a male bicyclist near North Clark Street just after 11:30 p.m. and kept going, investigators said.

He made a left turn on West Lake Street and caught the attention of ABC7 Eyewitness News security. The red SUV was badly damaged on the front end.

Vincent Lopez, an ABC7 security guard and former police officer, knew something was up.

"We heard a commotion coming down Lake Street traveling eastbound. We looked and we saw a car coming down the road. We could see sparking coming from the front end, because the front suspension had collapsed," Lopez said.

The driver pulled over, right in front of ABC7's rear driveway, got out of the SUV and tried to walk away. Lopez said the driver seemed intoxicated and claimed he hit a curb. That's when he and another colleague cornered him.

After calling 911 twice and talking to witnesses, Lopez figured out that the driver was involved in a hit-and-run crash.

"The car had obviously been involved in an accident. There was front end damage. His passenger side mirror was knocked out and hanging from wires," Lopez said.

When police arrived, the driver was taken into custody. He was ticketed for striking a pedestrian in the roadway, failure to keep in the lane, leaving the scene of accident and traveling the wrong way, police said.

Despite the damage done to the bike, the rider only suffered minor injuries, police said. He was taken to Northwestern Memorial Hospital for treatment.
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