UA prof killed while bicycling; driver arrested

5/30/2015, ~ 1830; bicyclist Raphael D. Sagarin was killed when struck from behind after a pickup driven by a suspected impaired driver swerved partially off the road. The driver Gary Colvin has been booked on suspicion of manslaughter.

Arizona / State Route 77 (i don’t know how to locate a milepost? the news reports says near milepost 99; i did find MP 98; see comment below — thanks mike) tends to be a fast, rural 2 lane highway out of town, with paved shoulders and rumble strips. More in town it looks like it’s 3 narrow lanes (not sure what’s up with the center lane?) and almost no shoulders.

The time of the crash, around 6:30pm would be about an hour before sunset — i.e. it was daylight.

Crash Report

This is ADOT incident=2982035 (sorry, link is unclickable). Unit actions / lanes / directions were consistent with news report: cyclist was on Shoulder; motorist faulted for FAILURE TO KEEP PROPER LANE (as well as SPEED TOO FAST…) . It also notes driver’s alcohol results as 0.064 (which would be below the per se limit) and positive for marijuana.

Criminal Case

Pinal County Superior Court CR-201501718;

I find no media coverage(?). Gary Colvin Jr pleaded guilty to manslaughter as of 4/11/2016.

That court doesn’t seem to have anything online other than the outcome (guilty/manslaughter), so I don’t have any idea what the sentence was. Some manslaughter sentences can be remarkably light (e.g. if the deal stipulated it was a  “non-dangerous”, yes believe it or not, manslaughter can be non-dangerous).


UA professor Raphael Sagarin killed in crash

…The man driving the pickup that struck Raphael D. Sagarin was allegedly impaired at the time of the collision, said Quentin Mehr, an Arizona Department of Public Safety spokesman.

Gary L. Colvin, 44, of Tucson, was booked into the Pinal County jail and is facing manslaughter charges, Mehr said.

Sagarin, 43, an adjunct assistant professor in the UA School of Natural Resources and the Environment, was riding a bicycle northbound near milepost 99 and was struck from the rear shortly after 6:30 p.m., said Mehr.

The investigation revealed the pickup swerved partially off the road and struck Sagarin, who was wearing a helmet, Mehr said.

2 thoughts on “UA prof killed while bicycling; driver arrested”

  1. Based on this statement by victim’s brother Mark Sagarin at :

    There is no reason you need a center turning lane in that location. One mile south there is a very safe bike lane [ed note: it’s a shoulder not a bike lane], then it drops down to about a 1 foot shoulder to squeeze in the unnecessary middle lane. Yes the driver was drunk and maybe on drugs, but an unsafe road also contributed to my brother’s tragic death

    The crash would have occurred closer toward town (unincorporated community of Oracle) where the road goes from 2-lane plus shoulders to three-lane plus negligible shoulder.

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