CHICAGO — A retired 72-year-old cyclist is leading a charge to prevent city prosecutors from accepting a plea bargain in the case against the driver who allegedly struck and killed Bobby Cann.
Robert Kastigar, a North Park resident, had never met Cann, who was killed last week on North Clybourn Street riding home from his job at Groupon. But Kastigar said he had to do his part in standing up for the young cyclist.
As of Wednesday afternoon, more than 4,200 people had signed his online petition demanding a full trial on the charges against Ryne San Hamel, 28, who faces counts of reckless homicide and driving under the influence.
Kastigar is specifically against a plea bargain so San Hamel gets a "full trial, in open and public court, to determine his sentencing," the petition states.
"There isn't too much you can do sitting at home on the keyboard and mousing around. At least it was something I could do," Kastigar said. "If I didn't do something I'd feel guilty the rest of my life for doing nothing."
Kastigar didn't expect many people to sign the petition, but 24 hours after creating it, he had close to 3,000 signatures from all over the world.
He plans on printing out the some 300 pages of signatures and comments and delivering them in person to the Cook County State's Attorney Anita Alvarez.
The Cook County State's Attorney didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.
He's taking them by bike.
"It ain't like I have to travel across the county. I can ride my bike downtown," Kastigar said.
Police from the Near North District are working with the Active Transportation Alliance to find court advocates attend San Hamel's court hearings.