Local News

Woman sues man who yelled 'hot pizza' before crashing into her on his bike

SPOKANE, Wash. - A 67-year-old woman is suing a man who crashed into her on his bike on the Centennial Trail back on September 22.

According to court documents regarding the lawsuit, Virginia Pearsall and her sister were walking along the right side of the trail at Nettleton Street near milepost 24, when Pearsall claims 44-year-old Justin Haller was biking behind her at a reckless speed.

Haller then yelled “hot pizza!” before crashing into Pearsall from behind with his bicycle.

"If you say 'hot pizza,' people don't freak out," said Haller. "You don't get herky jerky and move to either side. They can calmly figure out where they need to go, versus me barking an order.”

The bicyclist said he did everything he did to avoid the woman and faced several obstacles, including three women with strollers, and pylons.

Haller's hand had been previously injured, which affected his ability to stop his bicycle in time to avoid hitting Pearsall.

“I was preparing to break and didn't realize that my hand strength wasn't enough to avoid everyone,” said Haller.

According to court documents, the left half of the lane was clear and open.

Documents also allege that when Haller slammed into Pearsall, she smashed her elbow into the pavement, and sustained serious injuries, including fractures, and had to be taken to the emergency room.

The cyclist suffered multiple injuries as well, including a broken nose.

Witnesses claim that after the crash Haller began yelling at Pearsall, telling her that she “should have got the f--- out of the way,” “had no right to be on the trail,” and that the trail was for “cyclists only.”

Witnesses had to calm him down.

Haller claims that he has had several death threats since the incident.

Spokane police looked into the incident, but didn't find any reason to charge Haller with a crime.

The woman's attorney said they have no hesitation in asking for six or even seven figures in a case like this.