Legal Newswire

Stay up to date on legal news in the TIME’S UP! press center.

UPDATE 02/14/2006:
Legal Document: Judge Stallman’s Ruling. (PDF Format)

New York State Judge Michael D. Stallman rendered his decision on The City of New York vs. TIME’S UP! The judge rejected the City’s request for injunctions to prevent TIME’S UP!, certain TIME’S UP! volunteers, and “all those acting in concert” from meeting, participating in, or promoting Critical Mass.

UPDATE 04/12/2005:
We need your tax-deductible contributions for this legal battle. You can donate online:

Or address checks to:

TIME’S UP! Legal Defense Fund
P.O. Box 550
New York, NY 10009

A page one story in today’s New York Times reveals that the D.A.’s office

doctored videotaped evidence to prosecute a bicyclist who was arrested during the August 2004 Critical Mass. They edited out footage which shows that the bicyclist is innocent.

The Times website has online video showing which parts were edited out. (Windows Media or Real Format)

UPDATE 03/27/2005:

Police made arrests and seized bicycles at the March 2005 Critical Mass, and we held a press conference. Arrestees and those whose bikes were seized related their stories, and prominent civil rights attorney Norman Siegel described the city’s actions as needless, false, and unconstitutional.

UPDATE 03/23/2005:
Legal Documents: The lawsuit and affidavits. (PDF Format)

New York City filed a lawsuit this week, seeking to prevent TIME’S UP! from promoting or advertising events that the city alleges to be illegal. The lawsuit also states that TIME’S UP! and the general public cannot participate in riding or gathering at the Critical Mass bike ride. It claims that any event whatsoever with 20 or more persons requires a permit.

TIME’S UP! responds that this case is ridiculous, selective enforcement. Everyday there are hundreds of events that goes on with more than 20 people without a permit. Furthermore, we advertise hundreds of events each year promoting sustainable environmental solutions. Some of the events we organize and others we are just passing along the word. Our right to do so is protected under the First Amendment.

We are hoping for a friendly outcome that would benefit the people of NYC and we are actively seeking funds to defend the right to assemble and the right to free speech, without a permit. Still We Ride!

UPDATE 12/24/2004:
Legal Documents: Komanoff Declaration and Chief Smolka’s Testimony.

In another victory for the environment and cycling community, Federal Judge William Pauley ruled on Critical Mass (PDF Format).

Press Coverage: 1010 WINS, Daily News.

This is the second ruling in our favor. The earlier ruling (PDF Format) barred the police from stealing bicycles without charging their owners with a crime. There was a lot of work put into these trials, so many thanks to the lawyers and to people like you who collected pictures and statements. While Judge Pauley refused to grant an injunction stopping Critical Mass, the City may pursue the case in State court and many people who were arrested riding their bikes still have cases pending.

The many amazing revelations that came out in the courtroom will be useful not only in future trials and in the pending cases, but also in helping you understand traffic laws as you ride around the city. Most interestingly, cyclists do not need to be on the right side of the street or in a bicycle lane. Bike lanes should be used to the extent practicable. In other words, if the bike lane is too small, if you are turning, or if for some other reason you don’t feel safe, you do not have to ride in the bike lane. Also, cyclists can legally ride more than two abreast in New York City.

The two greatest concerns of bicyclists in New York have always been 1) safety, and 2) lack of secure bicycle parking. TIME’S UP! and the bike community are very concerned that some misguided City officials have been exploiting our two biggest safety concerns through their hostility toward group rides and the corrupt stealing of bicycles. We will be working with the City, Transportation Alternatives, bike stores, and numerous other organizations to make biking safer and to develop new guidelines to improve bike parking and put an end to the illegal seizure of parked bikes.

Everyone who testified at the hearing agreed that safety is the most important consideration, so in the upcoming year, TIME’S UP! will be encouraging people to ride in groups for safety. This will encourage more cycling — and better cycling infrastructure will follow.


UPDATE 11/2/2004:
Legal Documents: Available at the Interactivist Info Exchange

City injunction against Critical Mass riders denied! Preliminary injunction barring city from seizing bicycles without charge granted! Read the ruling. (PDF Format)

Legal Wranglings Began in August 2004

Over the week and a half surrounding the Republican National Convention, the NYPD targeted cyclists and made nearly 400 bike arrests. TIME’S UP! put out a Call to Bicyclists Arrested During the RNC and worked to bring together a legal response.

Since then, the City of New York has been targeting bicyclists and Critical Mass in particular.