Guy Drives Car into Logan Circle – Literally

A reader writes:

On our walk yesterday, I noticed a light green Passat driving around the statue area of Logan Circle – my husband decided to call 911 and started to run towards the car when it was clear the driver was driving around the Circle. When I got closer, I noticed that the car’s front was all busted – he had driven THROUGH the fence of the statue area. When my husband ran up to the car, the driver got out, checked his trunk for some reason, said, “I’m just trying to get out of the circle” then got back in. The driver then continued on through the circle, driving out through a sidewalk, into the actual traffic circle in the middle of traffic and around through Rhode Island Ave headed northeast. The police were notified of his direction, and a neighbor filmed part of it (see above.)

It was frightening to see someone clearly on drugs or possibly having a health problem continue on in their vehicle – in retrospect, my husband should have taken the keys from the ignition when the man got out to check his trunk. Knowing how busy that circle is not just with pedestrians but with people on benches, we’re lucky all that was ruined was some grass and the fence (that seems to get busted often).

45 Comment

  • Please please please tell me that someone wrote down his license plate. Get this idiot off the roads.

    • several people called 911 with the (DC) plates. the driver was an older while man with salt and pepper facial hair (more than stubble, not a beard) and short salt and pepper hair. Kudos to the neighbor for filming it.

  • I LOVE the dude in the black jacket walks by does a double take and keeps walking…nothing weird here.
    to the driver’s defense he did look both ways before he pulled out on to traffic.

  • ha, get these people off the road. Two weeks ago I wittnessed a young lady in a green bug driving up the MBT bike trail, just blaring music and talking on her cell phone. DC drivers are the worst, and for a city that generates tons of money from vehicle tickets, you rarely actually see a driver pulled over. only have speeding camera’s and parking tickets

  • On this note – does anyone have info about what seems to have been a car driving through the NPS park fence at 16th and Spring NW last Wednesday? I was walking my dog and saw all the flashing lights around 11pm, but I didn’t want to get close and just went back home. Then the next morning I noticed a hole in the fence the size of a car. I can’t find anything on community listerves, MPD or Park Police reports – but perhaps I’m missing something.

  • To be fair, he had just upgraded to iOS 6 earlier that morning.

  • Anyone know anything about the female cyclist hit by a car making a left from 15th onto U this morning at approximately 8:30am? I drove by right after it happened and saw a lot of people helping, but wanted to make sure both she and the driver were okay. Any updates?

    • Hi! It was me on the bike! Very scary accident, but luckily, got xrays and just have a bruised elbow (contusion) and achy knee. It was just crazy because I was going straight, on the bike path, using pedestiran signal/right of way, going straight and , she iddnt stop until she’d completely hit my bike. If you saw anything, or know anyone who did, I could use a witness to verify that I had right of way… my email is L (dot) nuge at I bike every day, and I love biking, and it’s just so crazy to have been biking so reasonably and that’s still not enough to guarantee safety…. Anyways thanks !

      • lordscarlet

        FWIW, pedestrian signal does not give you right of way from the bike lane, the regular traffic light does.

        • Perhaps my memory is wrong, but I do believe the signs on 15th st. say the opposite: follow the pedestrian lights and not the general traffic lights. I haven’t ridden on 15th since July though, so I could be mistaken.

          • Hey- ya its true, on 15th st, the bikes are supposed to follow pedestrian lights. In any case, it was green light, too.

          • Well I am really happy that you are okay! I’ve been googling all day to make sure that no one got too hurt. It’s hard being a biker, pedestrian and even driver in this city.

      • Just because you have the ROW on the cycle track on 15th street doesn’t mean that people will obey the RED left turn arrow. I’m shocked at how many times I’ve seen people make those lefts on red-arrow, and how many times I’ve seen cyclists idiotically plow through the intersections when they have the “don’t walk/ride” and the main lanes have a GREEN left turn arrow. The cycle track only works when people obey the signals, but you should never assume that people will actually obey them. I’m constantly craning my neck looking to see if anyone is going to turn into me while riding north on the 15th street cycle track.

        I’d prefer if they turned it back to a one-way southbound cycle track and had the northbound bikes in a bike lane on the east side of the street.

      • That’s been my one fear about 15th is getting hooked by a car who isn’t paying attn.

        And lordscarlet, you’re wrong in this case, the signs on 15th explicitly say otherwise.

  • Happens all the time… I saw a guy catch air over the New Hampshire Ave. Circle in a 5 series BMW a few months ago. Just a few weeks ago I also saw a guy walk through there holding a butcher’s knife. Circles are to be avoided at all costs.

  • A longtime resident of Petworth told me that back in the day when Ibex was still open (a Go-Go night club that got shut down after a tossed out patron shot a cop) people would crash through Sherman Circle all the time, coming too fast down Illinois Ave from Georgia.

  • That non-chalant black-jacketted guy is history’s greatest monster! Who just casually strolls through a situation like this!?

    • Don’t you think that’s a bit much? The situation was as under-control as it could get.

      • Yeah, by the time Black Jacket arrived the vehicle was being operated in a safe, controlled manner. I often see personal vehicles in areas where they’re normally not allowed, like on Metro station plazas, but as long as they are being driven responsibly I assume the driver’s been authorized to do it. Does this make me a monster?

    • Somewhere, black jack is obliviously strolling casually through the showers at Penn State’s football complex.

    • he was saving himself from the CRAZY driving through the circle… i would have kept going too..

  • “I’m just trying to get out of the circle.” Dupont Circle IS really confusing.

  • I would have thought it was some publicity stunt for something that had been approved by the city.

  • NO, he should NOT have taken his keys out of the vehicle. Your husband is not a police officer. He should have notified authorities, just as was done. otherwise this might be an infinitely more somber post.

    • Agree completely. However, I think that remark was made to stave off the inevitable insulting comments that the OP should have been a superhero and prevented the guy from driving away.

  • You honestly don’t think a sober, healthy person is capable of doing something this dumb? I sure do.

  • I think it was that new Google car coming out.

  • Just to chime in – I obviously didn’t see what happened but if this was an older man, I hope someone caught up to him in time to make sure he wasn’t having a stroke. A friend of my parents had something similar happen: he was pulled over for driving erratically and fortunately the police officer recognized that it wasn’t alcohol or drugs and got him help, which saved his life. This is absolutely not a criticism of the OP’s husband – just a thought for those who reported his license plates.

  • I was the one who recorded this video and this person was clearly not having a stroke. Aside from the fact that this drive through Logan Circle could have injured many of the people in the park, the worst part about the whole incident was the police response.

    I heard the call into 911 where the man clearly described the car, license plate, suspect, direction the vehicle traveled etc. When I left the circle I saw a cop car parked 1 block south of the circle and asked if he had heard about the crazy driver. He replied “Yeah, do you know what kind of car it was, the license plate or direction it headed?” I gave him the information I had and he headed out on Rhode Island. I don’t know what happened from there but would hope someone could update us on this post.

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